OCEANSIDE—The city clerk has identified insufficiencies with a notice of intent to circulate a recall petition that was recently served to Councilman Chris Rodriguez.
The Notice of Intent to recall was first issued to Rodriguez on Nov. 20 with 20 signatures from residents from District 2, which the council member represents on City Council.
Rodriguez was first elected to the position in late 2018.
The notice lists several reasons why these residents want Rodriguez out of office, including his promoting of the controversial North River Farms development project, recently approved by a majority of council, on social media and before a public hearing. This action, according to proponents, eliminated his fair and impartial analysis of the project and his constituents’ concerns about it.
They also take issue with him approving the development and include that in the grounds for recall list as well and claim there is a potential conflict of interest because of the property he owns in South Morro Hills where North River Farms will be built.
City Attorney John Mullen has previously stated Rodriguez does not have a conflict of interest because his property is more than 1,000 feet from the development site.
Other grounds for recall listed include operating vacation rentals with “numerous code violations” and selling properties rather than repairing them and trying to get a raise for council members.
Rodriguez would have had to file a written response to the notice within seven days of it being issued with the city clerk. According to City Clerk Zeb Navarro, however, the recall notice had insufficiencies that require proponents to fix and re-file the recall notice.
Navarro said the recall notice did not contain the residence address that included the city of each of the proponents of the recall, and only had 19 instead of the required 20 valid signatures from registered voters in District 2.
“When Councilmember Rodriguez has been re-served with the Notice of Intent, he will have seven days from being served to issue an official response with my office and the proponents,” Navarro said via email.
After Rodriguez files the response, proponents will have 10 days to prepare a petition and submit it to the clerk’s office. Proponents will then have 120 days to collect about 10% of the registered voters in District 2 to place the recall on the ballot.
“My focus is on the City of Oceanside and continuing to overcome our challenges and meet the goals that I was elected to accomplish,” Rodriguez said in an official statement sent to The Coast News. “Our community is only getting stronger, and I’m proud to represent my constituents in District 2 and the City as a whole.”
Rodriguez’s statement did not mention the recall notice.
Samantha Taylor covers Oceanside, Camp Pendleton and the decommissioning San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. She earned her journalism degree from the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University, and has previously reported for The Athens Messenger in Athens, Ohio, and USA Today in McLean, Virginia. Follow her on Twitter: @samm1son