Mission Viejo’s Lance MacLean RECALL election press release & calendar

Earlier today I received the following Press Release relating to the recall of Mission Viejo Mayor Pro-Tem Lance MacLean.
As I reported on Friday the Special Election can be called by our City Clerk for a vote as early as Jan 19th. The actual date and acknowledgment of the ROV petition signature verification must first be acknowledged by our city council.

Our ballot will contain two sections. First. Should Lance MacLean be removed where we will vote yes or no. If the answer is no, based on a simple majority, 50% plus one, that’s the end of the recall. If the majority of our voters say yes, we will have one or more candidate names to select from just as we did in the Governor Davis RECALL.

Timing. Just as occurs in any traditional election, candidates to replace Lance will need to obtain around 20 registered voter signatures on his or her nominating papers.
I am under the impression that they cannot commence submission of documents until the City Clerk gives the green light.  At the same time they will have the option to submit a 200 word Candidate Statement that will appear with the Special Election ballot. The victor will serve until the end of 2010 when Lance’s current term expires. The winner will be able to campaign as an incumbent council members in the Nov 2010 General Election.

Press Release

 MacLean recall qualifies for ballot
Mission Viejo, CA
, Sept. 26, 2009  – Mission Viejo Councilman Lance MacLean will face a recall election, which could be scheduled as early as Jan. 19, 2010. Mission Viejo City Clerk Karen Hamman emailed recall spokesman Dale Tyler at 4:36 p.m. on Fri., Sept. 25, with word the recall qualified for the ballot.

 Tyler delivered nearly 14,000 signatures to the city clerk on Aug. 24. The Orange County Registrar of Voters had until Oct. 6 to verify that at least 9,393 registered Mission Viejo voters signed the petition. The total submitted according to the official count, 13,933 signatures, comprised 48 percent over the minimum as a margin of safety.

 One of the recall proponents, Connie Lee, participated in the signature drive. She said, “After working in four signature drives in four years, I learned we couldn’t take a chance of coming up short. Not only did we go well over the minimum this time, we verified signatures before turning them in. We knew we had the number needed.”

 The city chose to have the Registrar of Voters verify signatures until reaching the required minimum of 9,393 instead of verifying all signatures submitted. By Friday evening, the city staff’s blog had already begun its spin. It reported only the number of signatures verified, not the total submitted, falsely portraying a narrow margin of victory. In fact, the registrar counted only 12,871 of the 13,933 signatures.

 Recall proponent Lisa De Paul-Snyder commented about the timing of the city’s email on Friday. She said, “As with city officials’ stonewalling when they don’t want to release public documents, the announcement came at the eleventh hour on Friday. I figured the recall was going to qualify, but how long did officials sit on news they didn’t like? I’m wondering how city hall’s masters of spin will present this defeat for the city manager and others who are trying so hard to keep MacLean in office.”

 During the signature drive, City Manager Dennis Wilberg was videoed stalking and harassing volunteers who were gathering signatures in front of the city library. Volunteers also filed police reports after MacLean and his handful of supporters either harassed or made threats of violence against signature gatherers.

 Tyler summarized the signature drive, “If this recall was a relatively tame one, it’s because MacLean has so few supporters. Let us hope the council majority members, MacLean, Frank Ury and Trish Kelley, don’t drag their feet and delay the process of scheduling the recall election. From my experience gathering signatures, I know voters are eager to remove MacLean from office.”

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 For information, call Dale Tyler, spokesman for the Lance MacLean Recall, (949) 360-1717.

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