Schwan certain to face recall

By Linda Bentley | September 9, 2009

CAREFREE – It’s all but a certainty that Carefree Mayor David Schwan will face a recall election in March, unless he decides to voluntarily resign.

Ryan Ducharme, treasurer of the Recall David Schwan Political Action Committee (PAC), said they have collected 183 percent of the number of valid signatures required (203), but with time on his side, set a goal to go for double. It will take about two more petition pages to reach that goal.

Carefree Mayor David SchwanSome may recollect that Schwan was originally appointed to council a few years back when a newly elected council member resigned, only to be appointed to the planning commission. That gave council the authority to appoint a member to fill that seat.

And, during last year’s council election, when the former mayor, vice mayor and a well-connected council member didn’t have enough votes to be elected during the primary, they each withdrew their candidacy rather than be voted out of office during the general run-off election.

That left four candidates vying for four seats, with Schwan as the lowest vote-getter.

Four members of council believed that was enough to qualify Schwan to be the town’s mayor and voted him in.

Schwan was quoted in a Scottsdale newspaper as saying those who support his recall are simply “upset with everything about the town.”

Town Administrator Gary Neiss expressed uncertainty about staff’s employment, as a change in leadership could mean a shake-up at the staff level.

Even though the town holds elections every two years and last year’s election was the last election where council appoints a mayor instead of the voters electing one, PAC Chairman Rod de Szendeffy believes the town is in a downward spin that can’t wait until the next election, noting Schwan didn’t receive the lowest number of votes without reason.