Alice mayor Jolene B. Vanover said the effort to recall her and council member Pete Crisp is “a detriment to our citizens” and called it “the retaliation recall.”
She blamed the proposed recall on council members Yolanda Moran and Elida Garza, who themselves are the subject of a recall referendum on the upcoming Nov. 7 election. Vanover said Moran and Garza both spoke of another possible recall effort in recent council meetings.
“It's sad that some people are so predictable,” she said. “I call this the retaliation recall. I was expecting this especially due to the people we are discussing. This is a detriment to our citizens, The organizers and contributors to this recall have no care that if successful our City of Alice will have no citizen voiced government to continue city business. After all, we are all sitting in these seats to be the voice of our citizens. Sadly, this recall is a confirmation that these members of council are vindictive, spiteful and destructive, and truly have no care for the betterment of our entire community.”
The City of Alice received affidavits for recall for Vanover and Crisp late Tuesday. Vanover was elected as mayor on May 6. Crisp won a re-election bid in that same election. Former city council candidate Tony Sexton submitted the affidavits to city hall, interim city manager Diana L. Lopez said. Sexton was on the May 6 ballot for Place 1 on the council and lost to Crisp.
Crisp said even if the recall effort against him and Vanover moves forward, he will continue to serve the community.
“As an elected official, it is the right of the citizens to question my actions,” he said. “I trust the process and will continue to do for the City of Alice what I swore to do when taking my oath; to preserve, protect and defend our laws and those of our residents.”
The City of Alice released the names of the Alice residents who signed affidavits to purse signatures for the recall petitions.
Twenty affidavits were submitted for Vanover. A total of 19 of the 20 were confirmed to be qualified voters in the City of Alice. Fifteen affidavits were submitted for Crisp, and 14 were confirmed to be voters in the city. Only voters registered to vote in Alice are allowed to participate in any formal part of the recall process. Each affidavit represents an Alice voter who can collect signatures for the recall petitions.
For Vanover, those who signed affidavits were Diana P. Valdez, Dominga Gonzalez, Arnoldo Lozano, Cora Lozano, Preciliano Gonzalez, April Castillo, Eugene Rodriguez Jr., Apologia Rosas, Sarah L. Vidrio, Patricia R. Gonzales, Zulema Silva, Ellen La Fountain, Felix Silva Jr., Cynthia Salinas, Stephane Sexton, Gloria Valdez Martinez, Anna Salas, Stacey Gault and Enrique Luna Jr.
For Crisp, those who signed affidavits were Diana P. Valdez, Dominga Gonzalez, Arnoldo Lozano, Cora Lozano, Preciliano Gonzalez, April Castillo, Eugene Rodriguez Jr., Apologia Rosas, Sarah L. Vidrio, Patricia R. Gonzales, Zulema Silva, Ellen La Fountain, Felix Silva Jr. and Cynthia Salinas.
The petitions for recall were issued Wednesday. Those seeking the recall have 60 calendar days to collect the necessary signatures and turn in the petitions to the city. In order for the recall petition to be effective, the number of signatures required is equal in number to at least five percent of the number of voters who cast their ballots in the last city election.
The total number of votes in the City of Alice Municipal Election held on May 6 was 2,249. Five percent equals 113 signatures. Each petition is treated as a separate petition, and therefore the 113 signatures will need to be for each petition, and not combined.