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Scott Hockenberry recall, West Jefferson, Ohio (2010)

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Scott Hockenberry was recalled from his position as mayor of West Jefferson, Ohio, in a special recall election that took place on September 14, 2010.[1],[2]

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.[2]

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."[2]

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.[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.[4]

See also


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