Zenger News tracked one new recall effort against local officials in Colorado from July 10-16, bringing the yearly statewide total to 12 efforts against 25 officials. The most recent effort is:
- Tommy Flower recall, Custer County, Colorado (2023): City Commissioner Tommy Flower.
- An attempt to recall Custer County District 3 Commissioner Tommy Flower in Colorado was initiated in 2023. Recall organizers said, “Commissioner Tom Flower has betrayed the Custer County Commissioner office, abandoned his Oath and is derelict in his duties. … The issue was related to overtime payment to Board of Health employees, which included his wife. According to the Ethics Committee, Mr. Flower’s actions constituted a breach of the public trust for private gain pursuant to § 24-18-103, C.R.S. Mr. Flower was fined, accordingly. Mr. Flower is a liability to the County. He has also created a hostile work environment at the Custer County Courthouse for some employees. At a December 2021 meeting, Planning and Zoning Director, Jackie Hobby, told the BOCC that her pending resignation was due to Mr. Flower’s continual harassment. The BOCC sanctioned Mr. Flower, by removing his management responsibilities and requiring him to attend sensitivity and leadership training. Mr. Flower needs to be recalled to save the county and a successor candidate needs to be elected.”
- In response to the recall effort, Flower said, “… I failed to publicly notify then-commissioner Jay Printz and commissioner Bill Canda that Cindi Flower was my wife when I discussed and voted on a motion to pay the employees of the Public Health Agency, of which she was an employee… I should have abstained from that vote due to a potential conflict of interest. I believe the body of work that I have performed as Commissioner in the last 5 ½ years speak to my dedication and commitment in serving the public to the best of my ability. …”
Of the 12 recall efforts this year, seven have made the ballot. Recall efforts make the ballot if recall supporters submit the required number of signatures by a pre-approved date. Recall supporters had 60 days to collect 25% of the last votes cast for each specific office in order to put the recall on the ballot. Recall elections seeking to remove the following officials have been scheduled:
- Cripple Creek, City Councillors Mark Green and Charles Solomone: Recall election on Jan. 24, 2023.
- Walsenburg, City Councillors Veronica Maes and Nick Vigil: Recall election on May 16, 2023.
- Dacono, Councilman Jim Turini and Councilwoman Jackie Thomas: Recall election on June 27, 2023.
- Custer County, Commissioner Tommy Flower: Recall election on Aug. 8, 2023.
- Englewood, Mayor Othoniel Sierra and City Councilmember Chelsea Nunnenkamp: Recall election on Oct. 3, 2023.
- Louisville, Councilmember Maxine Most: Recall election on Oct. 3, 2023.
- Broomfield, Councilman Todd Cohen: Recall election on Nov. 7, 2023.
Nationwide, 265 officials are the subject of recall efforts through July 19. Michigan leads the field with 91 officials targeted. Fifty-four targeted officials have made the recall ballot as of July 19. Michigan leads the field with 15 officials on the ballot.
Looking at Colorado alone, 34 officials were targeted in 2022. This is more than the ten-year average of 25.
In 2022, Zenger News covered a total of 266 recall efforts against 448 officials in 30 states as well as Washington, D.C. Michigan led the way in officials targeted for recall with 133 in 2022. California followed with 72. From 2016 to 2021, California had the most officials targeted in five of the six years.
Produced in association with Ballotpedia