Edinburg to mull recall petition document

Edinburg resident Robert Solis holds a petition requesting the resignation of Mayor Richard Molina at Edinburg City Hall on Wednesday, May 1, 2019. (Joel Martinez | jmartinez@themonitor.com)

EDINBURG — Council members here are scheduled to address an apparent roadblock to a petition to oust the mayor, but there is no guarantee they will resolve the issue during a special called meeting Friday.

Council members are set to meet at 1 p.m. to discuss a document Edinburg resident Robert Solis needs in order to collect signatures to recall the 2017 mayoral election.

Solis filed the petition 16 days ago after the Texas Attorney General’s office charged Molina with organized election fraud stemming from the 2017 municipal election that put him in power.

Solis has a total of 30 days to collect more than 2,100 signatures, but he hasn’t been able to do so because the city hasn’t approved a “petition blanks” form.

“The charter states that the city council should have prescribed the form of these ‘petition blanks’ after adoption of the home-rule city charter in 1949. However, a search of city archives indicates that never occurred,” the item on the agenda stated.

In order to adopt a form, the council looked to other governmental entities for guidance, including Montana state law, Plano, Denver and Tempe, Arizona as well as the Arizona Secretary of State, according to documentation attached to the item in the agenda packet.

Council members could either adopt a form on Friday or delegate responsibility to draft the document, according to staff recommendations listed on the agenda item. However, if they delegate the task, it could further delay the process.

Edinburg City Attorney Omar Ochoa previously said Solis could refile his petition to start the clock again.