Assembly Chair Felix Rivera will have to stand for recall. Judge Dani Crosby gave the order today, after Rivera and his surrogates unsuccessfully tried to fight his recall in court.
The judge denied the plaintiffs’ motion to decertify the petition. It will go in front of the voters in March unless there is a Supreme Court appeal.
Ballot will be mailed to voters about March 16 and are due back April 6, when the mail-in-only municipal election ends. Also on the ballot will be several candidates for mayor and school board seats, as well as bond issues.
Rivera’s recall will appear on the ballots of those living in his district, Anchorage Assembly District 4, Seat G, which is seen on this map:
A group of Anchorage residents loosely associated with the Facebook Groups Save Anchorage and Reclaim Midtown worked for weeks to get the required number of signatures to take Rivera back to voters. He was reelected to his seat just last April.
After the signatures were certified by the Municipal Clerk, Rivera and his surrogates filed a lawsuit, saying the signatures should not have been certified.
In her order, Crosby said it is up to the voters to decide if Rivera failed to perform his prescribed duties, and if so, whether that merits his recall from elected office.
The allegation stems from an order by former Mayor Ethan Berkowitz, who in EO-15 prohibited political gatherings of more that 15 people.
On Aug. 11, 2020, a meeting of the Anchorage Assembly took place, during which it was pointed out by Assemblywoman Jamie Allard that there were 17 people in the room, which was at that point closed off from public participation.
“After thanking [Ms.] Allard for her comment Rivera looked around the room and the Regular Meeting proceeded.” Allowing the Assembly to break the emergency order was the misconduct that led to the recall
The judge’s order is in this PDF document:
If he is recalled, the municipality must have a special election in 60 days.
“If the next election is more than six months away, the Assembly shall provide for a special election not more than 60 days,” the charter says.