Calaveras County growers serve recall papers on Tofanelli and Mills
Two licensed pot growers in Calaveras County served notices of intent to circulate recall petitions to District 1 Supervisor Gary Tofanelli and District 4 Supervisor Dennis Mills, on Tuesday at a county board meeting in San Andreas.
Jeremy Maddux, a resident Angels Camp who grew up in Arnold, served Mills during public comment at Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting. Maddux says he’s been in the cannabis industry for eight years, and he has two farms with pending permits.
Joan Wilson, who has a registered 3,000-square-foot outdoor cannabis grow on 20 acres she owns with her husband outside Angels Camp, served Tofanelli at the same meeting shortly after Maddux served Mills.
Rebecca Turner, the county clerk-recorder and registrar of voters, confirmed that recalls were served to both Tofanelli and Mills at the board meeting Tuesday afternoon.
As of 6 p.m. Tuesday, the county elections department had not received a notice of intent or proof of service for either of the recall efforts, Turner said.
People who want to recall Tofanelli and Mills have seven days, from the date they served the elected official sought for recall, to file a notice of intent and proof of service with the elections department, Turner said.
To get a recall of a supervisor on a ballot so voters can vote on it, people who want the recall have to collect valid signatures from 25 percent of registered voters in that supervisor’s district, Turner said. Tofanelli’s District 1 has a current registration of 5,596 voters and requires 1,399 signatures. Mills’ District 4 has a current registration of 6,219 voters and requires 1,555 signatures.
Maddux said she wants Mills recalled because “he has not been telling the truth about effects of the regulated commercial cannabis industry, and he has been lying with false reports and propaganda like Silent Poison, that’s an example.”
Maddux said he’s planted and harvested cannabis multiple times each of the past eight years. In the past two years, under regulation he’s paid well over $100,000 in cannabis cultivation related fees and taxes.
Maddux said he handed Mills recall papers with 55 signatures he gathered Monday afternoon and evening, and Tuesday morning.
Wilson, has been in the commercial cannabis industry the past two years and prior to that produced permitted medical marijuana products since 2011.
She said she wants to see Tofanelli recalled because “he has wasted county time and taxpayer money. He could have come in and banned right away. When he ran for office I could not get it out of him whether he was for a ban or for regulation.”
Tofanelli was elected in November 2016 along with Mills, Wilson said. Since then he’s undercut the cannabis industry in Calaveras County.
“He’s had every opportunity to work with us and he hasn’t,” Wilson said.
Wilson said she gave Tofanelli recall papers with the signatures of 24 registered voters who live in District 1. She said getting 1,400 signatures in District 1 is a realistic goal.
Tofanelli did not respond to efforts to get his response. Mills did.
“This will be another opportunity for the voters of District Four to decide how they want to be represented,” Mills said. “There is so much more we have done in the past year to help make our communities safer, working with constituents on issues that affect them and keeping the environment of Calaveras County protected.”
Voters in his district rejected Prop 64 and rejected Measure D, Mills said. He has simply been following their will.
The discussion of cannabis in Calaveras County should be about safety and quality of life in communities, protection of the environment, the future of children, and policies put into place to make those goals happen.
“It is not always about money, it is about priorities,” Mills said.
Tofanelli and Mills are not the only supervisors facing recall efforts. Turner said Tuesday she has received the notice of intent to recall District 2 Supervisor Jack Garamendi. That recall petition has been approved for circulation.
The number of valid signatures required in District 2 to get the recall on ballots is 1,319. The deadline for submitting those signatures is 5 p.m. April 19.
Contact Guy McCarthy at firstname.lastname@example.org or (209) 588-4585. Follow him on Twitter @GuyMcCarthy.
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