The petitions have been turned in to the Peoria City Clerk’s office in an effort to recall Acacia district Councilmember Vicki Hunt.
The Recall Vicki Hunt Committee is chaired by Andres Padilla Sr., who is retired, and the treasurer is Ramiro Rivas, who lists his occupation as a self-employed construction worker.
Three calls were made to Padilla over the past two weeks, and the person who answered the phone said he had been busy consulting with doctors pending possible surgery.
As of press time Wednesday, Padilla had not returned calls.
Election specialist Natalie Gilstrap, with the city clerk’s office, said the recall election would likely coincide with the Nov. 8 General Election. She said there were 798 signatures on 54 petition sheets received; 478 valid signatures of Acacia district registered voters are required.
Once the petition signatures are verified, the city clerk will call for a recall election, and any potential recall candidate has no more than 90 days and no later than 60 days before the election to have their name placed on the ballot.
In response to the recall, Hunt said, “Anyone is entitled to instigate a recall; however, there should be a solid reason for that action, i.e., malfeasance in office, theft, bribery, or some other egregious abuse of office. Since I have committed none of these offenses, (the recall chairman) instead puts the following on his ‘grounds of this demand for recall’ (as listed on recall petitions): ‘She has supported increasing costs to taxpayers. She has failed to hold city government accountable and require transparency in the city finances to stop financial waste.’
To these remarks, Hunt said, “As for transparency in ‘city finances,’ this is all open to the public through our website. Budget hearings were held in a public arena and were broadcast on Channel 11. Residents can check the website at any time to look at the budget.
“That’s transparency. My office door is also open at any time to someone wishing to talk about city finances or any other matter.
“There’s no true reason for this recall; this is just someone deciding he wants my seat mid-term. We are doing some pretty remarkable things in the Acacia district right now.”
“I feel that I’ve done an excellent job representing the people of the Acacia district. I am confident I will retain my council seat.
“I have so many plans in the works for this district; it is moving forward at mach speed. And I do believe the voters of this district will validate my remaining in office.
“It is difficult to run a recall campaign when I am working my council seat as a full-time job. It splits your thinking; it splits your time.”