An official recall petition submitted for Fairmont Councilman

Published: Sep. 25, 2020 at 6:40 PM EDT
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FAIRMONT, W.Va (WDTV) - As those within Fairmont have called out two councilmen for their comments made on social media, an official recall petition has been made in hopes that every signature leads to their goal of removal.

“It’s the only remedy we have,” said Tom Mainella, Fairmont Councilman.

Councilmen Mainella shared his thoughts on the process in place to have two members removed from council.

Both Karl “David” Kennedy and Barry Bledsoe have been criticized by those in the community for comments they’ve made on social media. A recall committee made of five city residents submitted an affidavit petition on Sept. 15., and now the official recall petition will need over 2,000 signature for each councilman.

“The signatures that they need to get is based on the number of eligible voters from the Nov. 6., 2018 municipal election.” said City Clerk Janet Keller.

Others on the council will oversee getting signatures from the community and if they reach needed amount, the process for a special election will begin. Keller said it is expected to cost $25 thousand or more to hold and could several months to get through.

“It would have to be held anywhere between 30 and 90 days after the signatures are validated. That will create two vacancies on Fairmont City Council and they will have 30 days after the seat is vacated to fill the unexpired term of those two council members,” said Keller.

“It’s going to be up to the people and i’m glad it’s that way,” said Mainella.

“This has affected not only the council but employees and residents of the community,” Keller said.

Now the petition was prepared by the city attorney for distribution however the wording on the petition blank is what the recall committee submitted to the city.

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