Official Letter from the Gilroy City Clerk (Exhibit A is included at the end of the letter)
August 18, 2022
Re: Estimated Cost of Potential Recall Election
Over the last few days, the City Clerk’s Office has received inquiries concerning the costs of a potential Gilroy City Council Member recall election. The Clerk’s Office does not generate election cost estimates; it must rely on the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters (SCCROV) to provide estimates based on whether the election is a Special Election or part of the November General Election.
Some community members have made accusations that the variation of cost estimates for a potential Council Member recall election are an attempt by the City Clerk and the City of Gilroy to influence the merits or possible outcomes of a potential election. The City Clerk’s office is built on transparency, impartiality, and public trust, and is responsible for complying with California State Election Code and local ordinances. Therefore, to alleviate any concerns about the involvement of the Clerk’s Office in determining the election cost, my office is releasing the email correspondence between myself and the SCCROV.
Beginning in January 2022, my office began correspondence with the SCCROV regarding the estimated cost of a potential recall election. The following timeline, supported by correspondence shown in Exhibit A, provides an outline of the estimated costs as I received them from the SCCROV.
January 13, 2022
The Gilroy City Clerk contacted the SCCROV to request an estimate for the costs of a Councilmember recall in (1) a standalone election and (2) a consolidated election for both the June Primary and November General election.
March 1, 2022
SCCROV responded to the Gilroy City Clerk with estimated costs of:
(1) $497,388 - $808,256 for a standalone election,
(2) $107,384 for a consolidated election held during the June 2022 Primary Election, and
(3) $35,882 for a consolidated election held during the November 2022 General Election
May 12, 2022
The SCCROV notified the Gilroy City Clerk that the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors would likely adopt an ordinance amending the Countywide Fee Schedule, which would include an update to the charges for SCCROV services. The revised Fee Schedule was officially adopted on June 7, 2022.
July 13, 2022
Based on the May 12, 2022, notice from the SCCROV of a revised Fee Schedule, the Gilroy City Clerk requested a revised estimate from the SCCROV.
August 7, 2022
The SCCROV responded to the Gilroy City Clerk with the revised estimate of $1,243,274 - $2,020,320 for a standalone recall election. An estimate for a consolidated election held during the November 2022 General Election was not included as the date for qualifying for the November General Election, July 6, 2022, had passed.
Thai Nam Pham, CMC, CPMC
City Clerk / Elections Official, City of Gilroy
Exhibit A is contained at the conclusion of the letter linked here.