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Constituents protest looming recall election of councilwoman - KOAA.com | Continuous News | Colorado Springs and Pueblo

Constituents protest looming recall election of councilwoman

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COLORADO SPRINGS -  Protest at Tuesday evening's Colorado Springs City Council meeting against those trying to recall Councilwoman Helen Collins. Folks in her district backed her up before city council. 

One of her constituents plans to file a protest to the recall election. He asked city council not to set a date for the vote. They did anyway, voting 7 to 2 to put it on April 7th's general election ballot.

"They're trying to fast track this recall," said Robert Blancken. "It's just dirty politics in Colorado Springs."

Blancken is a 30 year resident of District 4 in Southeast Colorado Springs. He claims council is violating city charter by setting the recall election date before the 40 day review process is complete. The signatures to get the recall on the ballot were certified by the city clerk on January 14th. Blancken and Collins believe a review will turn up invalid signatures.

"There's a company, Data Technical Solutions, that's reviewing the signatures," Collins said. "They're experts at petitions, and already they've found a lot of bad signatures and discrepancies with the petitions."

Councilman Merv Bennett responded to accusations of "fast tracking" the recall by explaining they voted to move it back, giving more time for review.

"It's my understanding that by city charter, it has to be done within sixty days of it being certified," Bennett said. "That would take it into the middle of March. If we did it in the middle of March, it would cost the city $200,000 to $300,000 for that recall."

Councilwoman Collins believes the recall effort is over her opposition to the stormwater solution. Says she voted "no" with her constituents. "Only one precinct out of 17 voted for the stormwater fee."

Collins has two years left in office. If the protest to the recall goes through, the question could come off of the ballot or the results could be thrown out.
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