Sunday, May 19, 2013
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Old Orchard Beach Town Councilors, from left, Michael Coleman, Robert Quinn, Linda Mailhot, Sharri MacDonald, Laura Bolduc, Dana Furtado, and Robin Dayton listen to a resident speak during the Old Orchard Beach Town Council Meeting on Feb. 19, 2013.
Tim Greenway / Staff Photographer
The rival committee that launched the effort earlier this week to recall the council's majority said its members "are fed up with the reckless behavior of the majority of our Town Council. We have decided to start these recalls to bring stability back to our government."
David Francoeur, chairman of that committee, said members don't want elected officials to represent hidden agendas, fire a town manager without cause or work behind closed doors. The committee wants Pearson to return to work.
Pearson, who is on administrative leave until his contract is terminated April 3, has said through his attorney that he will sue the town for wrongful termination if the council does not reverse its decision. Pearson is Old Orchard Beach's fourth town manager since 2007.
Both recall committees have 30 days to collect at least 815 signatures of registered voters, on a separate petition for each town councilor.
If the signatures are certified by the town clerk, the council will have 45 days to schedule a recall vote. Councilors can be removed from office with a simple majority.
If the number of signatures to recall any individual councilor falls short of 815, the process ends and a new petition cannot be started for 180 days.
Old Orchard Beach has 7,268 registered voters.
Town Clerk Kim McLaughlin said the only other recall attempt in Old Orchard Beach came in 1990. The attempt to recall Councilors Norma Baker and F. William Schlatterer failed.
McLaughlin will give a presentation about the recall process at Tuesday's council meeting. She said her presentation will include the cost of holding a special election, but those figures were not available Friday.
Gillian Graham can be contacted at 791-6315 or at: