It appears our brothers and sisters in Discovery Bay are prepared for an expensive fight as the Contra Costa County Elections Division approved the Brian Dawson Recall Petition.
The organizers are now free to begin circulating the petition for obtaining signatures to remove Dawson from the Discovery Bay Community Services District. Organizers have 90 days (February 6, 2012) to gather 1,649 signatures to place the matter on the ballot for the June 2012 ballot.
The recall is in response to what transpired on Aug. 27 where Dawson was arrested on suspicion of spousal abuse at his home in Discovery Bay after officers responded to a call about a disturbance. Dawson’s wife sustained injuries in the incident but did not require hospitalization. He was released the next day on $20,000 bond.
In an email to The Press, Dawson indicated he would stand his ground. “Speculating on what will be done down the road is the very type of distraction I am working hard to avoid,” he wrote.
“The potential cost of a recall election to district residents and the county is, unfortunately, being brought about by proponents of the recall, not myself. I intend to fulfill the promise I made to the voters and complete my commitment to serve my great community with honor, pragmatism and innovation.”
State law dictates that a CSD board member is required to resign only if convicted of a felony.
Should Mr. Dawson resign? I am neither a judge nor jury. That is for Mr. Dawson and the people of Discovery Bay to decide what is in the best interest of the community. With that being said, this type of behavior is unacceptable for any elected official at any level.
When you serve the community, whether fair or not, one is held to a higher standard. I would hope he understands this. It is fair game for people to ask questions and demand he resigns.
In looking into the background of this situation, I have found his justification to remain on the board standard; however, his statements are quite bizarre and somewhat hypocritical.
For instance, Mr. Dawson relinquished his role as the board’s vice president and step away from other roles; however, he will not fully remove himself from the situation. How can one fulfill some duties with his apparent mental condition but cannot serve in others? If he is bipolar, what prevents him from snapping at someone from the public?
He appears to be using his condition as a crutch and an excuse, as if his condition makes it okay for a slip up. Meanwhile, he believes this to be a personal matter when it’s not.
The minute he was elected to represent the public, Mr. Dawson lost the ability to use “it’s a personal matter” as a shield in order to prevent people from asking questions and holding him accountable.
Mr. Dawson has all the power here. He can resign which would stop him from being a distraction for Discovery Bay. This would allow the board and community to focus on more important issues. Or, he can continue to and fight the petition which will get expensive and be a waste of everyone’s time.
Below is a portion of the petition which can be found on Halfway to Concord (link below).
According to the Petition, the grounds for proposed recall states:
We believe Brian Dawson is unfit for office and unfit to represent the Town of Discovery Bay Community Services District. He has had multiple angry confrontations following board meetings, which nearly led to blows, broken up by bystanders. He also passed a note to the board President during a meeting, threating to “kick your ass” over a policy disagreement.
Since his Aug. 27, 2011 arrest on charges of child endangerment and spousal abuse, Dawson has apologized for the actions that left his wife bruised; He was charged with criminal and child endangerment and spousal abuse.
He claims to be back on the medications for bipolar disorder from which he claims to suffer, however, he has demonstrated poor judgment, inability to control his anger, and an increasing potential for violence throughout his term.
Dawson has refused calls from fellow directors to step down from his seat on the CSD, and because of the distraction and danger Dawson presents, and his refusal to resign his position on the board, we find it necessary to seek his recall.
The printed names of the proponents include: Don Flint, Evadene Kirkpatrict, Angeline Digiusto, John Emerson, Eric Item, Jeff Barber, Patricia Schroeder, Nadine Kelly, Mark Doran, Tom Alacon.
The answer of the officer sought to be recalled is as follows:
It is with disappointment that I must write this response, but I feel that the voters of Discovery Bay deserve and honest explanation for recent events, in light of the numerous false accusations being made against me. I did make a mistake, and I take full responsibility for my actions as my family and I work through our very personal situation, however this mistake has no bearing on the work I do on the DBCSD Board.
Serving our community is a privilege and a duty that I take very seriously. In less than two years of serving you, I am proud of the progress that we’ve made and the leadership, innovation, and positive energy I have brought to this position. I believe each time we fall we are presented with another chance to pick ourselves up and try again as stronger, smarter versions of ourselves.
It is my greatest hope that the public can forgive me for my human failing, judge me based upon the merits of my idea and decisions as a Director, and allow me to continue the work this community honored me by electing me to do. A second chance is all I ask. – Brian Dawson.
(Editorial note: Mr. Dawson’s address has been removed).