Recall election scheduled against California county supervisor

A recall election against District 2 representative Leonard Moty on the Shasta County Board of Supervisors in California has been scheduled for Feb. 1. The candidate filing deadline is Nov. 17.

The recall effort began in April 2021 and was initially against three of the five members of the board. District 1 representative Joe Chimenti and District 3 representative Mary Rickert were named along with Moty in the notices of intent to recall. Recall supporters filed signatures for the recall against Moty by the deadline on Sept. 29. They did not submit signatures for the other two commissioners. ​​To get the recalls on the ballot, the petition against Chimenti needed 4,392 signatures, the petition against Moty needed 4,308 signatures, and the petition against Rickert needed 4,432 signatures.

Recall supporters cited the following reasons for recall: 

  • “Betrayal of public trust by not defending the county from state government overreach”
  • “A need for fundamental change and irresponsible handling of taxpayer money”
  • “The recall effort is the last resort to create change and they cannot wait until the next election”

After the recall election was scheduled, Moty said he would defend his position. “Now is not the time to tear us apart as some has sought,” Moty said. “But rather it’s a time to move our county forward. I will say here and now, I refuse to allow personal attacks on myself, my family, dedicated county workers, and courageous citizens by those who would halt our progress in our county.”

Moty was first elected to the board in 2008, and he was re-elected to a four-year term on Nov. 3, 2020. He received 51% of the vote in the general election, defeating two challengers.

Before turning in signatures, recall supporters filed a lawsuit in Shasta County Superior Court, asking for a deadline extension to circulate petitions. They said smoke from multiple fires impeded their ability to collect signatures, and they requested a 32-day extension. Shasta County Superior Court Judge Tamara Wood denied the extension request.

In the first half of 2021, Ballotpedia tracked 164 recall efforts against 262 officials. This was the most recall efforts for this point in the year since the first half of 2016, when we tracked 189 recall efforts against 265 officials. In comparison, we tracked between 72 and 155 efforts by the midpoints of 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020.

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