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October 14, 2016

The recall petition against Flint City Councilman Scott Kincaid reads as follows: "That on Monday, September 26, 2016 Councilperson Scott Kincaid voted to POSTPONE resolutions put forth by Flint Mayor Karen Weaver to teach her a lesson. The above said vote on 9-26-2016 was directly related to the well publicized waste collection ("garbage") dispute."

By Mike Killbreath  •  Posted on October 14, 2016

Recall effort launched against longest-serving Flint councilman

   FLINT — A petition to recall Flint City Councilman Scott Kincaid from office was filed Friday with the Genesee County Election Division. Kincaid, who has served 31 years on the council, is in the final year of his current four-year term and can't be recalled under state statute.

   The recall petition reads as follows: "That on Monday, September 26, 2016 Councilperson Scott Kincaid voted to POSTPONE resolutions put forth by Flint Mayor Karen Weaver to teach her a lesson. The above said vote on 9-26-2016 was directly related to the well publicized waste collection ("garbage") dispute."

   Flint's Concerned Pastors for Social Action held a press conference on Oct. 3 to demand that Kincaide apologize to the mayor for his comments about the mayor. One black pastor, Dr. Herbert Miller of Metropolitan Baptist Tabernacle, made accusations that the long-time city councilman was racist in his comments about "teaching the mayor a lesson" and said: "Mr. Kincaid is playing plantation politics. Our mayor is not some little slave girl." Kincaide is whte and Mayor Dr. Weaver is black.

   Kincaid led a 5-to-3 vote on Sept. 26 when four of his city council colleagues joined him in voting against three resolutions put forth by the mayor's administration. One was for a contract to make repairs on the north building at the Flint City Hall complex. A second contract rejected was for engineering on a maintenance project at the city's utilities department. The third contract rejected was for Nan McKay & Associates to make rental inspections for the city on rental homes.

   "He blocked city business to teach her a lesson, and it was wrong," said City Councilman Eric Mays who voted for all three contracts. Councilwoman Monica Galloway and Councilman Herbert Winfrey voted with Mays. Councilman Kincaid convinced fellow council members Kate Fields, Vicki VanBuren, Wantwaz Davis and Kerry Nelson to team with him in sending the so-called "lesson" to Mayor Dr. Weaver. Councilwoman Jackie Poplar didn't vote because she missed the meeting due to health issues.

   The pastors took issue with a statement published by The Flint Journal which Kincaid made during the Sept. 26  public meeting. He said: "She’s one individual that’s been elected by this community, but on this waste collection contract and other issues, Weaver seems to think like she’s an emergency manager. The only way to teach her how government works is to show her. It’s like a young child — if you don’t correct them the first time, they will continue to do what they are doing and it will continue to get worse.”

   Pastor Allen Overton of Flint's Second Missionary Baptist Church joined the group of pastors at the press conference, and said: "We cannot stand and allow council people to take personal jabs at the mayor, We will not sit idle and allow this administration and this mayor to be disrespected. By any means necessary we will move forward to bring Flint back together.”

   The Flint Journal published an original story in its MLive online edition that indicated that the pastors were planning a recall against Councilman Kincaid, but later issued a correction when the group's chairman (Rev. Alfred Harris of Flint's Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church) stressed that no such threat had been made by the Concerned Pastors for Social Action. The group's official press release also didn't make accusations of racism against Kincaid despite the public comments by Rev. Miller at the press conference event.

   Councilman Kincaid has never apologized for his comments about the mayor with any public statement.

   One of his staunch supporters in the garbage hauling contract dispute, Arthur Woodson, posted online that Councilman Mays and Leroy Jackson are behind the recall movement against Councilman Kincaid. Woodson said in a Facebook post: "They are mad that he and this administration, along with the concerned pastors, (have) been caught with their hands in the cookie jar. They can't even recall him in his last year. We will work on Eric (Mays' 1st Ward) seat next year."

   Both Mays and Kincaid are up for re-election at the August 2017 primary and November 2017 general election. Mays is serving his first four-year term as the 1st Ward councilman while Kincaid has been elected eight times by 9th Ward residents.

    The county's election commission will likely be convened next week to examine the legality of the language on the petition submitted for the recall of Kincaid. The commission consists of County Clerk / Register of Deeds John Gleason, Chief Probate Judge Jennie Barkey and Treasurer Deb Cherry. All three are Democrats and Kincaid is also a Democrat.

   If the recall language is approved, state law requires signatures to be gathered on petitions during a 90-day window. Only signatures from registered voters in the 9th Ward would count toward a total that would be a percentage of votes cast in the November 2013 election.

   Kincaid faced an unsuccessful recall effort against him in 2011. The 2011 effort failed when the county's election  commission declared that petition language was unclear. The petition language was filed in 2011 by 9th Ward resident George Harper who was well known for obtaining signatures for major petition drives on statewide ballot proposals. Harper told My AM Advantage that he was assisting a recall effort led by Nick Singelis who was helping at the time in a recall effort against former Flint Mayor Dayne Walling.

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