Commissioner recall petitions come up short

TV Hagenah

There will be no recall of Tucumcari City Commissioner Jim Witcher.

In the Thursday evening meeting of the Tucumcari City Commission, city clerk Rachel Hicklin presented her report on the results of her examination of the signatures on recall petitions submitted late last month to her by George Aragon.
In her report to the commission, Hicklin said of the 42 signatures on the petition calling for the recall of Witcher, 19 signatures were disallowed thus leaving 24 valid signatures on the petition. Hicklin said after further examination of the signatures on the petitions she permitted one of the 19 disallowed signatures to be reinstated, raising the acceptable signatures on the petitions to 25.

The city clerk said the required number of signatures to inaugurate a recall election in this case was 26 so the number was one voter short of that required number.
The required number is drawn from 20 percent of the last general election in a district or and average of the last four elections – whichever is greater.

Witcher said he felt very pleased with the result of Hicklin’s examination of the signatures. “I feel that I have had a weight lifted from my shoulders,” said Witcher about the failure of the recall petition. “I felt I was in some sort of limbo – not knowing if I would be here (the city commission chambers) or not. Now, I can concentrate on city business.”
Commissioner Bettie Ditto said she too was happy with results of the city clerks examination of the petition. “I for one am very happy that you will be here,” said Ditto to Witcher.
Hicklin said the signatures that were not allowed were purged for a number of different reasons as stated by state statute including; illegibility, being on the petition more than once, not living in the district and not being a registered voter.