Petitioners have until March to gather 1,844 signatures

Two days after petitions were filed to recall the mayor and three city councilors, the city sent out official letters to each of the four petitioners Dec. 11, three granting permission to begin gathering signatures and a fourth asking for a resubmitted petition.

Curtis Sommer, who filed the petition to recall city councilor Jody Carson, omitted three pieces of information in his original paperwork and refiled after receiving the letter. The city officially approved his petition Friday.

The four petitioners — residents Karie Oakes, Reena Heijdeman, E. Marie Horvath and Sommer — allege that the city councilors broke their oaths of office by violating public meetings laws, “failing to represent the best interests of West Linn citizens,” “ignoring recommendations from city advisory boards and commissions” and “failing to assert proper control and direction over the city manager and city attorney.”

With their paperwork officially approved by the city and Secretary of State Elections division, the petitioners will each have 90 days to gather the 1,844 signatures needed to trigger an election.

“West Linn had 12,287 votes cast in the last governor’s race,” City Recorder Kathy Mollusky wrote in the letters sent to the petitioners. “This means 1,844 signatures (15 percent of the governor vote) are required.”

Oakes, Heijdeman and Horvath will have until 5 p.m. March 11 to turn those signatures over to the city, while Sommer’s deadline is March 13.

As Mollusky wrote in the letters, only active registered voters in West Linn may sign the petition.

If obtained, those signatures would be sent on to the Clackamas County Elections Department. The county would then have to certify the signatures as legitimate before holding an election.

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