Dozens of Troy residents asked Mayor Janice Daniels to resign Monday night, and Daniels listened attentively but has said she has , despite the criticism over her use of a .
Attorney Michael Bartnik of Troy-based Bartnik Law Offices, who said he does not approve of the since the offending post surfaced Friday, wrote in a letter Wednesday to Troy Patch: "The people of Troy do have the recall remedy."
In order to file a recall petition, Bartnik said, there are three substantive requirements:
- The petition must “state clearly each reason for the recall.”
- “Each reason for the recall shall be based upon the officer's conduct during his or her current term of office.”
- The petition cannot be filed until six months after “the officer has actually performed the duties of the office." For Daniels, this is six months from the first City Council meeting following the November election, Bartnik said.
The petition may be filed with the Oakland County Clerk. "Then, whoever wants to organize this would need to put in their language that they want as grounds for the recall," Bartnik said.
Bartnik said the petition must be signed by at least 25 percent of the number of Troy voters who voted in the recent election for governor*.
He noted that since the was made before Daniels took office, it does not meet the second requirement and cannot be used as a reason for recalling the mayor.
"However, if Troy voters want to recall the mayor for something she has done while in office, the state constitution and statutes are behind them," he said.
Troy City Attorney Lori Grigg Bluhm said Troy City Council members "don't have the ability to remove her in any way, shape or form," and that a recall is the only way to remove the mayor from office. But the City Council "can pass a resolution (censure) that basically is a resolution of disapproval," she said.
She added that the censure "is really just a slap on the hand."
The only government official in the state who can remove Daniels from office without a recall is the governor, Bluhm said, though Daniels would first have to be found guilty of misconduct of office — a criminal offense.
"This probably does not rise to misconduct of office," Bluhm said.
Bartnik said he contacted Patch about the recall requirements because "the residents should just have the information available to them so they can take the initiative."
He added: "I’m very upset about the negative publicity that this has engendered for our town. It’s a negative impact on our diverse community."
*We originally reported the petition must be signed by at least 25 percent of the number of Troy voters who voted in the recent election for mayor; it should read "governor," not "mayor."