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Cornelius recall raises $1,750

In the first week of campaigning, effort to oust Team 3 pulls in cash and signatures
by: Chase Allgood Cornelius City Councilor Jamie Minshall and Mayor Neal Knight chatted while opponents gathered signatures to recall them.

It's hard to recall an elected official.

According to the League of Oregon Cities, 56 percent of recalls between 1997 and 2003 failed at the polls. And that's not counting the efforts that never made it to a ballot.

So when former city councilor Brad Coffey launched an effort to oust two Cornelius city councilors and the city's Mayor, Neal Knight, he knew it'd be an uphill battle.

But at a signature gathering rally Monday, Coffey said he thought they could get the 391 signatures they need to trigger a recall election.

Winning the election is another matter. 'I think the second phase is going to be harder,' Coffey said.

But in politics, money talks, and by Tuesday, the recall campaign had $1,750 in its coffers, ready to be spent on the fight.

More charter violation complaints

The rally preceded an unusually quiet meeting of the city council, where two new complaints alleging Knight violated the city's charter by interfering in the day-to-day operations of the city staff were put in the hands of interim city manager Paul Rubenstein.

Rubenstein will send the complaints to an outside agency, possibly someone affiliated with the League of Oregon Cities to review their validity.

The first complaint, filed by Kevin Harmon, claims statements made by Knight in the June 8 edition of the News-Times constitute an attempt to coerce the former city manager Dave Waffle into firing Richard Meyer, the city's director of development and operations.

The second, filed by former mayor Bill Bash and co-signed by nearly 60 citizens, alleges a contract Knight had Meyer sign violated the charter.

To read the complaints, visit www.fgnewstimes.com.