MEDFORD, Ore. — A Southern Oregon man is launching a recall effort against State Senator Alan Bates, because of the lawmaker’s proposals about dredge mining.
The petitioners say they are unhappy that Senator Bates proposed legislation that would restrict suction dredge mining on Oregon creeks and rivers, and designate some rivers as “scenic waterways.”
The recall effort is being spearheaded by Rick Barclay, who said Bates’ proposals violate property rights. Barclay said the Galice Mining District has moved to stop those pieces of legislation. He said miners have not had support from the Oregon legislature, and the recall effort is their next step.
“None of them have responded to the charges, and it’s time these people realize that they can’t take people’s property rights,” said Barclay.
Senator Bates is in Salem this week. When reached by phone, he said he’s not focused on the recall, and is putting his attention to his work in the legislature.
Bates said none of the petitioners have tried to contact him. He said none of the proposals mentioned by the petitioners have even passed, and have not been up for discussion. He said, “If every proposed bill is a level for recall, we couldn’t function.”
The petitioners need to gather 7,500 valid signatures by July 29th in order to launch a recall election. Barclay says so far his supporters have gathered about 1,000 signatures.