On April 8th papers were filed with the City of Phoenix Clerk’s Office to open a recall campaign against Councilmember Sal DiCiccio. To date, no signatures have been filed with the Clerk’s office, but the committee has 120 days to turn in a valid number of signatures from the date the committee was opened (which means a deadline of August 5th or 6th of this year).
Once signatures are turned in and verified / certified, a special election must take place on one of the four consolidated election dates in Arizona. However, the election must take place at least 90 days after the signatures are validated (the Mayor has 12 days to officially “call” the election following certification).
So, if the signature gatherers can gather enough petitions and have them certified by June 2nd, DiCiccio’s recall election would be held on August 30th, 2011.
If they miss the June 2nd window, Sal’s recall election would be held on November 8th, 2011 (assuming they qualify).
So who is behind the recall effort? A shadow group by the name of “Save Phoenix Taxpayers” masquerading as concerned neighborhood activists.
Who are they really? Mostly union forces and the liberal factions of City Hall working to unseat a vocal critic of the union bosses running City Hall. The chairman and treasurer of the committee is a union member. Andrew Chavez, owner of a well-connected Democrat-oriented petition firm (Petition Partners) has been circulating paid signature gatherers. Andrew’s resume reflects a history of representing the most liberal forces in our state.
Petition Partners is currently spearheading recall efforts against Senator Russell Pearce, Governor Jan Brewer and Senator Jon Kyl.
There’s no website or contact information for “Save Our Taxpayers” and no one seems to be too eager to talk on record about the effort. Which is odd for a group that is supposedly so opposed to a Councilmember’s representation that they would actively work to recall him.
Recently, the Arizona Republic discussed the latest controversy surrounding DiCiccio’s recall campaign.
A committee fighting efforts to recall Phoenix City Councilman Sal DiCiccio has filed a complaint with the City Clerk Department, alleging its opponent is violating campaign-finance laws.
The law firm representing Citizens Protecting Taxpayers in Opposition to RC-2-11, which formed to fight a recall election against DiCiccio, claims its opponents have spent and raised more than $10,000 to oust the councilman. As a result, the group must report its expenditures and donations, the complaint says.
Paid petition gatherers have been working throughout Phoenix to collect the more than 7,000 signatures necessary to trigger a recall election, DiCiccio said. Those signatures cost money and the committee should reveal how much it is spending, he said.
Calls to Save Phoenix Taxpayers, the group formed to recall DiCiccio, have gone unanswered. But the group appears to be tied to local union leaders, as the chairman and treasurer of the group list their occupations as “labor.”
“It is time for Save Phoenix Taxpayers to comply and come clean about just how much money Big Labor and their comrades are paying to bankroll this effort,” according to a letter from the anti-recall committee sent to acting City Clerk Cris Meyer.
Meyer said the complaint has been forwarded to the city’s Law Department, which will determine what, if any, action will be taken against Save Phoenix Taxpayers.