BROKEN BOW–The Broken Bow School Board Recall Election has made its way to the District Court. On Monday, Attorney William Erickson informed KCNI/KBBN that he filed a complaint (October 6) with the District Court on behalf of plaintiffs Diane Scott, Jerry Scott, Sandra L. Wright, Gary Wright, and Julie Foster. The defendant is listed as Broken Bow School District No. 25.
The complaint reads that Drew Schendt was the primary circulator of the petition for the recall of School Board member Carl French. The petition required 454 signatures, Schendt and other volunteers filed 550, and the final count contained 514 valid signatures, as verified by the Custer County Clerk. The clerk notified French of the sufficient recall petition on August 29.
French was then required to order an election no less than 30 days nor more than 75 days after that notification according to Statute 32-1306, but a motion failed to do so during the school board meeting on September 18 (Click here to view the story.) The school board voted three to three on a November 14 election date for Carl French and the motion failed after a closed session. French, Pirnie, and Atkins voted against setting the date believing that the petition was filed in violation of Nebraska Statute 32-1309, which reads:
Recall petition prohibited; when.
No recall petition shall be filed against an elected official within twelve months after a recall election has failed to remove him or her from office or within six months after the beginning of his or her term of office or within six months prior to the incumbent filing deadline for the office.
In Carl French’s case, the incumbent filing date is February 15, 2018 (the date by which he must file in order for re-election). The recall petitions and collected signatures were submitted to the county on August 18.
However, the board did vote to set a recall election for J.B. Atkins on November 14.
The plaintiffs’ desire is that the court set a recall election date. A hearing on the petition has been set by Judge Karin Noakes for October 18 at 9 a.m.