Members of the Oakland County Election Commission approved petition wording for a recall effort against state Sen. John Pappageorge (R-Troy) on Thursday afternoon.
Pappageorge represents the 13th District, which covers most of Bloomfield Township, all of Bloomfield Hills, Birmingham, Troy, Clawson and Royal Oak. He is in his final term due to term limits.
But some constituents said they want him out before 2014 for helping approve measures that they say will increase people’s taxes.
Specifically, petitioners seek the recall for Pappageorge’s support of House Bill 4361 in May, which replaced the controversial Michigan Business Tax, raised the income tax and trimmed some tax credits.
“You can’t tell me that eliminating a tax credit is not the same thing as a tax increase,” said Clarkston resident Phillip Reid, referring to votes by both Pappageorge and state Sen. Jim Marleau (R-Orion Township).
Reid told the commission, comprising Oakland County Clerk Bill Bullard, Chief Probate Judge Linda Hallmark and County Treasurer Andy Meisner, that the petition language was specific enough for clarity and was self-explanatory.
No one spoke or attended the hearing on Pappageorge’s behalf.
The commission reviews petition language for clarity and the potential to confuse prospective voters. It does not evaluate the merits of the petition.
Bullard said he found the petition unclear because there is no mention of what HB 4361 actually did. He was overruled.
“It’s a clear, short statement and clearly identifies the House bill in question,” Hallmark said.
Petition organizers will need 27,001 signatures within 90 days to get the recall on the ballot, county officials said.
Marleau is also facing a recall on language that was approved by commissioners late last month. Two different petitions were filed with the county, but one was denied by commissioners for being too vague.