The Oro Valley Town Council meets at 3pm today to decide if it will take advantage of an offer by Pima County to hand verify one of the recall elections.
Town attorney Tobin Sidles has recommended against this on the basis that based on his reading of the law, a hand count is not specifically allowed by law. This, despite the fact that the state attorney general has opined and approved such a hand count.
It makes no sense for the council to not approve this measure, especially give the county's history of questionable election results.
Yesterday, after all voting units were check and verified for logic and accuracy and sealed, a county employee was seen and captured on video opening one of the sealed and approved units. (Source: John Brakey of AUDITAZ). The county will retest and reseal again today.
"Word on the street is" that the Majority-4 will not allow the hand count even though there is legal precedent, it will cost nothing, and it will reinforce the election results.
The following is the text of an email sent by Oro Valley resident Don Bristow urging the council to approve the hand count audit.
Mayor Hiremath and Councilmembers,
The State of Arizona’s Attorney General and Secretary of State as well as Pima County Board of Supervisors and the City of Tucson have all agreed that a verification of the votes cast in the November 3, 2015 election is legal. Yet in spite of all these confirmations and support for verification, the staff of Oro Valley has recommended that The Town of Oro Valley not allow a verification of the accuracy of the recall election.
The obvious explanation for the unique Oro Valley legal opinion is one that supports the desired outcome of staff and Council. Any challenge of this legal opinion and council action to accept this opinion will be moot as the election will have already occurred.
If Council believes verification of an election is a crime, than accept the legal opinion. However, you are under no obligation to accept this opinion. In fact the overwhelming evidence is that there is no valid legal justification for not approving verification.
One of many election issues is lack of transparency. Hiding behind a questionable legal opinion and rejecting vote verification clearly supports the claim that some members of the current council do not conduct the Town’s business openly and transparently.
There are ongoing discussions regarding vote manipulation in Oro Valley elections. Refusing to join with others and allow a verification process tends to support this belief. No amount of denial will overcome this belief if you reject verification.
Do the right thing and approve a verification sampling of Oro Valley votes by the Pima County Election Commission.
Oro Valley concerned citizen