ESCANABA, Mich. (WZMQ) – On Thursday, a group of Delta County residents hoping to remove three County Commissioners from office hit another milestone.
The Delta County Citizens for Ethical Leadership have been circulating petitions in support of the recall of Commissioners David Moyle, Bob Barron, and Robert Petersen. The recall effort began when the three commissioners voted in support of firing the former county administrator, Emily DeSalvo, in February.
“I thought, ‘What on earth is going on here?’ because something was not right,” said Citizens for Ethical Leadership member Sandra Sovey. “I started going to the meetings and saw that I wasn’t happy with what was going on and decided to get involved.”
“I think the firing of the previous administrator was a catalyst to make everybody pay attention,” said fellow member Teresa Ross.
Circulators from Barron’s district, District 3, held signing events, went door to door, and established a signature station at Sovey’s business, Sandy’s Family Salon. Thursday morning, the group turned in 1,235 signatures.
“We want to thank everybody that worked so hard to get these signatures,” Sovey said. “It was a very big task, but we got it done! We also made a lot of good friends doing it.”
“It gives us a lot of pride to see how much community support there was for this,” said Ross. “We were very warmly welcomed, even going door to door.”
The group’s goal is to get Barron’s recall on the ballot in May of 2024. However, the petition will first go through a verification process. 1,001 of the signatures must be determined to be valid.
Barron will then have up to 30 days to challenge any of the signatures.
“Our intention is to review them and if we believe they need to be challenged, we will,” Barron told WZMQ 19.
Barron says the recall process is within the citizens’ rights, although he believes there are political motivations behind it.
“A number of them were ones that their candidate didn’t win last year, but we will go through this process,” he said. “We have to go through the court of public opinion as far as voting is concerned in May.”
Signatures for Moyle’s district were turned in on September 25. Moyle is engaging in a review of that petition with a team of people.
Circulators in Petersen’s district have until early November to continue collecting signatures. They currently have more than 60% of the necessary signatures.