School board member recall appears to qualify for poll

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The architect of a ban on political symbols, including those supporting gay pride and Black Lives Matter in Newberg schools, appears to be faced with an ultimatum: resign by Friday or hope Newberg voters side with his side in a recall election in January.

Yamhill County Clerk Brian Van Bergen told The Oregonian / OregonLive that as of Monday, a campaign effort to recall Newberg School Board Vice President Brian Shannon far exceeded the number of valid signatures required to place the reminder on the ballot.

The required minimum is 2,547 and the county has found no reason to invalidate more than 3,000 signatures, Van Bergen said.

If the signatures are fully certified by the end of Monday, Shannon will have until Friday night to step down, Van Bergen said. Shannon told the newspaper he will not be resigning, which means that by Monday he will have to submit a 200-word explanation as to why he should not be called back to the clerk’s office.

“I have no intention of resigning,” Shannon said. “I continue to believe that the majority of our community supports the Council’s efforts to keep adult political agendas out of taxpayer funded schools.

Shannon was first elected to the board of directors in 2019 in an election in which only 17% of Yamhill County voters participated.

Newberg School Board President Dave Brown, elected in 2019, also faces the possibility of a recall election, potentially on the same ballot as Shannon in January.

Brown voted to ban Shannon’s political symbols and fired Superintendent Joe Morelock without cause in November, rejecting calls from minority board members to keep the popular administrator.

Recall campaign Dave Brown said it would submit more than the required number of signatures to Yamhill County on Monday.

Brown did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the newspaper.

The school board’s Tory majority faces several lawsuits for his conduct, including a ban on political symbols and the board’s hiring of Canby’s attorney Tyler Smith in a meeting in August that failed been properly reported to the public.


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