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Rancho Ortega Blog discusses matters of public interest in South Orange County, including the communities of San Juan Capistrano, Ladera Ranch and Rancho Mission Viejo.

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One the Eve of the Signature Deadline, SJC Recall Calls it Quits

The campaign to recall San Juan Capistrano Mayor Sam Allevato faced an important deadline today.  As you might remember from this article, today was the day the signatures were due:

The recall organizers, Residents for Honest Government, now have 120 day to gather signatures from 20 percent of San Juan Capistrano’s 17,511 registered voters, or 3,503 signatures. The deadline to turn in the petition is March 7.

Late yesterday, Residents for Honest Government announced in a letter to city officials that it was terminating its efforts to recall the Mayor, even though they were “just short” of the needed signatures.  The Patch has the story here.

This is good.  We here at the blog have been opposed to the recall effort from the beginning.  That’s not to say that San Juan Capistrano isn’t facing important issues in the next election, because it does.  Among other things, the City has suffered adverse decisions in two high profile court cases involving water rates and the newsrack ban and faces mounting questions over whether the Groundwater Recovery Plant was a good use of taxpayer funds.  Nevertheless, in our opinion, those are election issues.

We’ve always believed that a recall is not a legitimate means by which to try to overturn election results.   A recall is an extraordinary means to remove an elected official from office for criminal acts, violations of honesty or integrity, or a serious breach of the candidate’s election mandate.  No doubt the recall supporters sincerely believe that Allevato did meet that heightened recall standard, but we disagree.  The recall group should now set its sights on winning a majority in the next City Council election, and should they be successful, we’ll see if they are any more effective at governing than the current majority.

EDIT: To add copy of the termination notice as filed with the City:

source: City of San Juan Capistrano

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