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Recall petition filed, rejected in Goodrich

November 24, 2010 - Goodrich-By a 3-2 vote on Nov. 8 Patricia Wartella was named village council president.

Four days later, a petition to recall Wartella had been filed.

And while the Genesee County Clerk Michael Carr, County Treasurer Deb Cherry and Chief Probate Judge Jennie Barkey voted 3-0 to deny the petition on Tuesday morning—area resident Norman Bass said it's only the beginning.

"I was criticized by the county for being too general and broad. There were six other recalls also thrown out that were in my opinion very specific that even included finger pointing," said Bass.

Bass filed a recall petition against Wartella on Nov. 12, "for (her) total disregard for the financial well-being and saf(e)ty of the residents of the Village of Goodrich."

During the Nov. 8 meeting, Wartella —along with newly elected council members Doug McAbee and Phil Jackson — voted to replace the village attorney Thomas McKenney with Fllint attorney F. Jack Belzer. They also voted to replace Pete Morey as street administrator with McAbee. Morey then resigned and walked out of the meeting.

"This petition is just a stepping stone—I have a group of people in the village that are going to hire counsel to help write this language correctly. I'm going to have the counsel representing us at the next meeting—they are going to overlook the decisions that have been made and assure they abide by the charter."

"If this recall happens I'm not looking to get voted in," said Bass. "I'm at 90 percent of the meetings—I care about this village. This recall is going to happen before Christmas. She (Wartella) is making motions that could destroy our village."

Wartella said the recall is ludicrous.

"My intentions from 2006 when I was first elected has been to represent each resident to the fullest—this has not changed. I want to make sure that every resident is getting the most for what they pay for—nothing has been jeopardized. The statement is ridiculous, I don't know who is influencing him (Bass). He has started false rumors. If residents need to be afraid, they should be afraid of these people. I'm out for the good of the people."

"We need an independent study to direct the council—we are looking for a route to take without increasing taxes—and get the job done," she said. "Every aspect of the village should be examined from the DPW to all employees, we'll follow whatever the study reveals."

Recent Goodrich recall history

nIn June 2009, petitions seeking to oust Councilmembers Richard Horton, David Lucik and Pete Morey, as well as Council President Edmund York, were filed by village resident Diana Fredericks. Councilmember Patricia Wartella was not named. The recall effort which was OK'd by the county in June, never received the necessary signatures.

n A recall battle began in September 2007. Village resident Greg Tankersley filed petitions in an effort to oust four of five village council members, President Edmund York, Richard Horton, David Lucik and Pete Morey. Not named in the recall was Patricia Wartella. The allegation made on the petition was failure to balance the village budget when requested to do so. The recall was rejected due to a petition slip-up on Jan. 23, 2008.

nIn February 2005, residents headed to the polls to vote whether to recall Village Council President Keith Walworth, President Pro Tem Adam Kline, and councilpersons Angela Adamec, Mike Glynn, and Jayme Simmonds, based on an allegation that there was a failure to schedule an election for the disincorporation of the village charter of the Village of Goodrich when requested to do so. That recall successfully ousted all five councilmembers.

n In 1998, Councilmembers Marsha Rockafellow, David Lucik, Enid Pearson and Tom Gordon were successfully recalled over a road paving contract. Not recalled in that election was Keith Walworth.

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