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Down for the Count – Recall Petitions to Determine Face of San Bernardino Ballots in November

SAN BERNARDNO, CA— As of approximately 1:30 p.m. last Friday August 23, 2013 all recall petitions turned into the San Bernardino City Clerk’s office by Scott Beard of the pro-recall group San Bernardino Residents for Responsible Government (www.sanbernardinorecall.org), were in possession of staff from the San Bernardino County Registrar of Voters (ROV) office.  This was after the court hearing held on Thursday in which the city clerk was directed to accept the petitions for a count.  ROV staff assisted city clerk Gigi Hanna’ staff in performing a rough county, and now the Registrar of Voters is charged with fine counting the petitions and checking addresses and signatures on the petitions for validation.

The recall petitions turned in Friday were against San Bernardino City Attorney James Penman, Ward 7 Councilmember Wendy McCammack and Ward 5 Councilmember Chas Kelly (Ward 5). The recall petition against Ward 3 Councilperson John Valdivia (Ward 3) was already turned in to the city clerk previously and forwarded to the Registrar of Voters.  On Monday afternoon of August 26, Michael J. Scarpello, the Registrar of Voters, had not yet released the results of the counts on the newly received petitions.

Though the recall group originally announced a recall drive against just about every city elected official, no petitions were turned in for Mayor Patrick Morris, who announced he will not be seeking a third term.  Also no petitions were turned in against three Council Members who are up for re-election in November anyway: Ward 1 Councilperson Virginia Marquez, Ward 2 Robert Jenkins, and Ward 4 Fred Shorret.   Attempts to circulate petitions to recall Sixth Ward Councilperson Rikke Van Johnson (whose council seat is not up for election this November) were unsuccessful as residents in his Ward were primarily supportive of Johnson.

Johnson along with McCammack and Kelly have announced their candidacy for Mayor the upcoming November election, along with a packed field of eight other candidates.

The number of registered voters in the city and in each of the city’s wards as recorded by the California Secretary of State as of February11, 2013, are the base numbers used to determine if the threshold has been met in the number of valid voter signatures gathered in the recall petitions.

Recalls against city-wide office holders require a 15% threshold.  Of the 77,254 registered voters in the city, 11,588 valid voter signatures are needed in the recall petitions launched against City Attorney Penman.  Attorney Tim Prince announced this Monday that he will run against Penman on the recall ballot, and is the first candidate to declare on any of the potential recall elections.

The threshold is higher – 25% – for council seat recalls. There are 14,707 registered voters in Ward 5, so 3,677 valid voter signatures are needed on the petitions against Councilperson Kelly.   There are 12, 802 registered voters in Ward 7, so 3,021 valid voter signatures are needed on the petitions against McCammack (being counted at ROV now).  Voters are waiting for the ROV’s final counts to see if the petitions were ultimately successful against Penman, McCammack, and Kelly.

Voters are already aware that Councilmember Valdivia will face a recall. There are 9,419 registered voters in Ward 3, so 2,355 signatures were needed on the petitions against Valdivia. 2,702 signatures were collected, validated, and sent to the ROV by the City Clerk.  There is some controversy over Valdivia’s response to the recall charges not being included on the actual recall petition that was circulated against him.

The rules for responses to petitions is that once a Notice to Petition (for recall or anything else to be placed on a ballot) with the City Clerk, the target (or opponents) of the recall have 7 days to no

OFA Coalition Partners Gather for a Day of Action

RANCHO CUCAMONGA, CA- Volunteers from Organizing for Action and five Coalition Partners, which include Mayors Against Illegal Guns, Brady Campaign, MoveOn, SEIU, and Parents of Murdered Children gathered in Rancho Cucamonga for a gun violence prevention rally. According to Curt Lewis, volunteer organizer, over 200 gun similar events were held around the Nation to remind Congress that the overwhelming majority of Americans support the legislation to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people.

“This was the first gathering of our coalition,” Lewis said. “We all want Rep. Gary Miller to step up and be a part of the solution by co-sponsoring H.R. 1565, the Public Safety and Second Amendment Rights Protection Act, and we thought this would be a way for the Congressman to hear our collective voice.


Community Champions Support Assemblymember Cheryl R. Brown’s 1st Annual Tools for Success Day


Tools for Success

BLOOMINGTON, CA- Assemblymember Cheryl R. Brown (D-San Bernardino) in partnership with the San Bernardino County Library, the National Investment Division of the National Association of Real Estate Brokers (NID) Housing Counseling Agency, Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP), Westech College and the Community Action Partnership of San Bernardino County hosted the 1st Annual Tools for Success Day, a back to school celebration with giveaways, entertainment, food and gifts on Saturday, August 17 at Ayala Park in Bloomington and Saturday, August 24 at the Baker Family Learning Center in Muscoy. Between both events, nearly 250 students were provided a backpack stuffed with pencils, pens, notebook paper, coloring books, activity books, colored pencils or crayons, back to school haircut coupons, stickers, a ruler, a cookbook and literature.

During the event, special remarks were given by Assemblymember Cheryl Brown, San Bernardino County Librarian Leonard Hernández, San Bernardino County Superintendent Gary Thomas and Executive Director Linda Jackson, NID Housing Agency.  Assemblymember Brown shared information about California’s Legislature implementing the local control funding formula. This initiative allows our school districts to control the money that comes from the state and use it to close the achievement gap in our struggling schools at the local level.

Assemblymember Brown encouraged parents to be proactive and engage their children’s school principals, teachers and counselors to ensure that funding is being used to meet the educational needs of their children. The 1st Annual Tools for Success Day also featured free health screenings, financial literacy information, financial assistance services for homeowners and other valuable educational resources for classroom success.