Scott Hockenberry recall, West Jefferson, Ohio (2010)
Tom Phillips led the recall effort. Phillips was the mayor of West Jefferson for one term. He ran against, and lost to, Hockenberry, in a 2007 primary for mayor of the city.
The recall petition asserted that Hockenberry:
- Hired a cousin to repair village computers.
- Changed the route of a bypass through land owned by his in-laws.
- Hired law firms and reduced corporate development fees.
- Used public money to design, address and mail his personal Christmas cards.
- Created a hostile work environment.
In response to the assertions, Hockenberry said, "I am confident that nothing I have done is wrong. This is politics as usual. I have made some unpopular decisions that haven't set well with some people, but everything I have done, I stand by."
Path to the ballot
To force a special recall election, recall organizers needed to collect at least 120 signatures.
The recall committee did collect signatures on a petition in May and June. These signatures were presented to the city clerk in early June, and the city clerk certified the petition, notifying Hockenberry that he had to resign within five days or face a recall election on August 3.
However, days later, the Madison County Board of Elections threw out the petition, saying that the recall committee had failed to register the petition with the clerk of council before they started the process of collecting signatures.
Faced with this setback, recall organizers said they would press the re-start button, file the petition with the clerk of council, and re-start their effort.
A committee that submitted the petition failed to register it with the clerk of council before gathering signatures.
The petition was certified by the clerk on June 10, giving the mayor five days to resign or force a special election Aug. 3 in the village of about 4,300 people.
Former village mayor Tom Phillips said his committee fighting Hockenbery now must get 120 signatures in order to force a special election in November.
- Recall campaigns in Ohio
- Political recall efforts, 2010
- Mayoral recalls
- Madison County, Ohio ballot measures
- 10 TV, "West Jefferson Mayor Recalled," September 14, 2010
- Columbus Dispatch, "West Jefferson mayor, unhappy residents do battle," May 25, 2010
- Columbus Dispatch, "Petition to recall West Jefferson mayor moves forward," June 11, 2010
- Columbus Dispatch, "Petition to recall West Jefferson mayor rejected," June 16, 2010