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RECALL BEING BORN?

By Josh Resnek

An embryonic effort is growing to launch a recall of Mayor Carlo DeMaria.

The possible recall in the making is the result of the mayor’s involvement in the Federal probe concerning racism, discrimination and retaliation that has been launched by US Attorney Rachael Rollins.

That probe is apparently well underway.

The recall effort also centers around the mayor’s effort to remove or to have replaced School Superintendent Priya Tahiliani.

Tahiliani filed an extensive complaint alleging racism and sexism against the mayor with the Commission Against Discrimination.

The planning and discussion effort for the recall is being led by about a dozen prominent and outspoken Everett residents including John Puopolo, Paula Sterite, and Sandy Juliano.

Former councilor, Attorney Fred Capone, who lost the November, 2021 election to the mayor by 210 votes, is believed to be supportive of such an effort but will not publicly comment about where exactly he stands.

Capone has been keeping a high public profile since his election loss.

In addition to his support for the action taken by the US Attorney, Capone has repeatedly expressed concern about the mayor’s longevity payments of $40,000 a year which remain a question of contention between Capone and DeMaria.

DeMaria claims the longevity payments of $40,000 a year were not only justified but deserved.

“The payments were a matter of interpretation,” the mayor has said publicly.

Capone has ridiculed that assertion. He claims the payments to DeMaria were about “fraud” and “theft.”

Capone has demanded the mayor to pay the money back – a total of $180,000 which the mayor received.

Capone believes the payments should have been $2500 a year as denoted in the city charter.

The mayor, for reasons known only to himself, refused to take the $40,000 payment this year – a payment which would have risen to $50,000 had the “interpretation” been continued.

Capone has also been outraged by the racist behavior of city officials, chief among them, former Councilor Anthony DiPierro.

DiPierro resigned in disgrace following two months of protest and acrimony by the city’s Black, Brown and Hispanic majorities.

During that period, the mayor did not ask for DiPierro’s resignation or for the resignation of communications chief, Deanna Deveney.

Rollins noted the lack of response in her annotated letter indicating a probe had begun. Deveney resigned following her involvement in DiPierro’s racist behavior.

What happens to other city officials who participated with DiPierro and Deveney in their racist antics, and who have not apologized or been disciplined, remains a question mark.

A recall election (also called a recall referendum, recall petition or representative recall) is a procedure by which, in certain polities, voters can remove an elected official from office through a referendum before that official’s term of office has ended.

Unseating a mayor is an extremely difficult exercise in government to carry off successfully.

First of all, a recall is essentially a replication of last November’s election effort.

The mayor won the last election. He might very well win a recall.

Opponents of the mayor are studying the possibility of a recall.

The mayor is ready to defend himself against such an effort.

The beat goes on.

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