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Cascade Locks man files recall petitions

By SUE RYAN

News staff writer

September 27, 2006

Petitions for the recall of Cascade Locks city councilors Rob Brostoff and Lee Kitchens were filed Friday afternoon with the city.

The petitions are now at the of Hood River County elections department, which will determine if enough of the signatures filed are valid to put the recall on the Nov. 7 general election ballot.

There were 81 signatures turned in on the petition to recall Rob Brostoff and 86 on the petition for Lee Kitchens. The county’s records and assessments director, Sandra Berry, said it is the first recall election since she began in her position 16 years ago.

“We have 10 days to verify the signatures before returning them to the city,” she said.

Her staff will be checking the signatures against county election rolls. For the Cascade Locks recall, there needs to be 59 valid signatures on each of the recall petitions for the election to go forward. The county has 10 days following the filing to verify the signatures. The petitions were filed in Hood River County on Monday.

According to the Secretary of State Web site, the “requisite number of signers on a recall petition is 15 percent of the total votes cast in the electoral district for all candidates for Governor at the most recent election at which a candidate for Governor was elected to a full term next preceding the filing of the petition for verification of signatures.”

“After returning the petitions to the city, the recorder will notify the chief petitioner and the objects of the recall and they are given time to respond,” Berry said.

The response period is for the councilors either to resign or to file a declaration of why they do not feel they should be recalled.

Cascade Locks resident Stan Bowyer is the chief petitioner on the recall. He listed identical reasons on each of the petitions for recall, stating that Kitchens and Brostoff had misrepresented the people of Cascade Locks.

He wrote on the petition that they did not listen to the citizens when they asked for low density on the McCoy property, representing only the development of the proposal. The rest of Bowyer’s statement mentions that the councilors asked no questions about the impact the proposal would have on the neighbors of Cascade Locks.

“Traffic problems that will be caused by the amount of people and (their) cars, noise that it will bring, and the disruption of the streets,” he wrote.

Bowyer has been an outspoken critic of the city council since they approved the sale of close to two acres of city property on July 10.

At that meeting, community members spoke both for and against the proposal during a lengthy public hearing. The Cascade Locks city council split on the sale by a vote of 4 to 3, which sold the land to the Columbia Cascade Housing Authority for $300,000.

Their proposal is to develop a mix of 30 units combining one-story and two-story apartments for affordable housing. The agency is awaiting word of a federal grant this fall before going ahead with the project.

The city sold the land to help finance construction of a new fire hall for Cascade Locks. The current structure is an unreinforced concrete block building put up in 1956 by volunteers.

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