The office released a statement on Friday, July 21, declaring that 5,951 of the signatures on the petition for Weaver’s recall are valid. Recall leader Arthur Woodson needed a minimum of 5,750 signatures – a figure equivalent to 25 percent of city voter turnout in the most recent governor’s election — to move the recall efforts forward.
The signatures were certified by Genesee County Clerk John Gleason and then checked for voter registration status by Flint City Clerk Inez Brown, Gleason said.
Weaver now has until July 31 to challenge signatures before the recall is placed on the November ballot, said Gleason, who cautioned that “it’s still very early in this process.”
If the recall is struck down, Gleason said that Woodson may challenge it in court.
“I am going to continue doing the job I was elected to do and will not be distracted,” Weaver said in a statement.
In late April, Genesee County Circuit Judge Geoffrey L. Neithercut ruled that language put forth to recall Weaver was valid and that the recall process may go forward.
The judge who okayed language to recall Flint Mayor Karen Weaver says the petition seeking to oust the mayor focuses on her actions in office — not whether a contract she signed was valid.
The recall language by Woodson in late February reads “Mayor Karen Weaver, signed September 22, 2016, signed an emergency waste collection contract with Rizzo Environmental Service(s).”
The mayor recommended a contract with Rizzo, but city council members voted against the move in late June when a contract with Republic Services was due to expire.
Rizzo and Republic Services, the company with which the city eventually entered into a one-year, $3.7 million contract, were both picking up trash at one point in Flint neighborhoods in September 2016.
Officials with Rizzo have since been connected to a public corruption investigation in Metro Detroit.
Weaver filed an appeal following the language’s March 8 approval, in which attorney Kendall Williams argued the emergency contract was non-existent due to a legal technicality regarding a lawsuit against Weaver, her administration and eight Flint City Council members.
“My goal is, and has always been, to do what is in the best interests of the citizens and the City of Flint,” Weaver said in a statement after the initial approval of the recall language. “I will continue to fight for the people of Flint and do my job for the people of Flint and do my job as I have been since being elected…”
Woodson had filed previous language in January, but he withdrew it after he said he spoke with the mayor about concerns he had regarding the city’s administration.
After filing the recall language, Weaver sought to have a personal protection order issued against Woodson over claims that she was fearful for her life, but a judge denied her request.