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City Clerk Brings Over Extra Staff to Verify Thousands of Signatures

POSTED: Monday, September 19, 2011 - 5:05pm

UPDATED: Tuesday, September 20, 2011 - 5:13pm

EL PASO - City workers are busy pouring through thousands of signatures on those recall petitions that Pastor Tom Brown turned in last week. The process could force a recall election for Mayor John Cook and two City Reps.

It's Municipal Clerk Richarda Momsen's job to verify thousands of signatures on the recall petitions and she only has until this weekend to do it. She told NewsChannel 9 everyone in her office is working extremely hard to get the job done.

Late last week Pastor Tom Brown and his supporters handed the Momsen three recall petitions. One for Mayor Cook, one for Representative Susie Byrd and another for Representative Steve Ortega. Brown says they collected around 15,000 signatures between all three petitions.

But those signatures now have to be verified. Momsen said she has 16 staff members dedicated to the job. They've already put in about 360 staff hours closely inspecting each signature. Momsen said some staff members have been brought over to City Hall from Municipal Court to help.

They have to make sure the signatures are from registered voters, some have to be in certain districts and the forms have to be legitimate. Brown needs about 1,600 verified signatures to force a recall election for Mayor Cook and about 650 each for Byrd and Ortega. Brown said he has more than enough.

If everything checks out, Momsen said a recall election could be held next May.

Brown and his supporters are trying to kick Mayor Cook and the two City Reps out of office because they voted to restore health benefits to gay and domestic partners of city employees, after voters took the benefits away.

Stay with NewsChannel 9 for updates every step of the way.

Comments News Comments

Mr. Kai Porter. For Mayor Cook isn't that 6100 verified signatures?

Please keep us posted on the final official count. TIA.

"THE BIG PICTURE, PART II" The Texas Constitution bans same sex marriage or alternative arrangement schemes. So the majority has spoken and rules. Getting medical and other benefits from your employer whether private or government is not a constitutional rights issue. If gays want to get married no one is stopping them as long as it is in state where it is permitted. Also, most private employers will deny or terminate your dependent medical coverage unless you can prove you are legally married

Why can't we have the recall vote in Nov.?

Stay strong Mayor and city reps. These religious extremist are the equivalent of the Taliban for America. They are the scum fringes of society with their blind allegiance to HATE! Say no to BULLIES!

Good going Pastor Brown I like democracy in action get rid mr cook and cronies...

IF COOK AND THE 2 REPS WANTED TO DO THE RIGHT THING, THEY WOULD RESIGN. THEY KNOW THEY BROKE THE LAW OF THE LAND, WE ARE STILL THE PEOPLE AND THE VOTE WAS BY THE PEOPLE, NOT BY A HITLER OR STALIN LIKE COOK AND THE 2 UGLY 2 REPS! SAVE El_Paso the money and get the hello out of office & let someone that knows the U.S. Constitution take your stinking wormy skummy, rat brained place you bums. No, you want to cause as much problem and stink up the city with your presents & you need to go!

Is there a petition we can sign to block the recall?

Nope. You can't block democracy in action. Maybe through the court system with a Plaintiff's Original Petition, however, filing frivolous and vexatious petitions could get you in trouble. Plus the "No Recall" opposition is too lazy to hit the streets. It is alot of work.

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