By Tim Hunt
Combining a recall effort with a council campaign?Uploaded: Jun 19, 2018
Backers of the two recalls efforts in Dublin are in the final stretch of gathering signagtures, targeting early July to submit the petitions to the county registrar’s office.
That’s according to a May 24 email from Bobby Khullar. In that email, Khullar also notes that’s tossing his hat in the ring for the City Council election in November.
The late May update headlined that they’d gathered more than 3,000 signatures to recall school trustee Dan Cunningham and Councilman Abe Gupta. The irony is that, given the Registrar of Voters can take up to 30 days to validate the signatures, the soonest the question can go on the ballot is November. Dublin Citizens United have been working on the recalls since last December.
Gupta’s term is up in November, so the recall question is moot and the registrar likely will not put it on the ballot. Cunningham’s term has two years to run so the recall would be valid question for voters to decide.
In an email to me, Gupta wrote that,” I have been told that if the hope was to call a special election the time to collect signatures to force that has passed.
It's my opinion that the recall folks such as Bobby Khullar are misleading the public by collecting signatures for an item that cannot ever go on the ballot. I suspect their goal is to try to defame me and allow Khullar to help his campaign.”
Khullar, for his part, has a website up that touts his experience in the public and private sectors. Currently he manages San Francisco’s Muni’s capital projects that total $3.4 billion (the very expensive extension of the Muni from South of Market to Chinatown and Union Square is the top one).
He’s also worked for PG&E’s gas operations and Worley Parsons in Australia. He grew up in Orange County and moved to Dublin Ranch five years ago.
The signature-gathering campaign gives Khullar an organized group of volunteers that he can tap for his November run.
Should the recall of Cunningham qualify, it will make for an interesting ballot. The terms of two other trustees, Megan Rouse and Dan Cherrier, are up in November. There will be one race for their seats plus another one to determine who would replace Cunningham if voters recall him. That would be for two years to finish the term, while the others would be for a four-year term.
Commend anyone willing to step into the race and wrestle with the challenges created by bad decisions by former boards, particularly deciding that only Dublin High was needed to serve students. Potential solutions are in the works to alleviate school overcrowding, but there’s no more thankless job than school trustee—in the best of times.
In addition to wrestling with facilities, they will also have to deal with the steadily increasing district share of employee pensions with no ability to raise additional money other than going to voters for another parcel tax.