BROOKINGS, Ore. -- A petition submitted to Curry County is calling for the removal of four port commissioners.
The petitions each had more than 1,000 signatures, according to the chief petitioner, Skylar Windham. They needed 856 signatures to qualify.
The petitioners claim the commissioners illegally fired the Port Manager, Gary Dehlinger.
According to the petitions, the Port of Brookings Harbor Board of Commissioners held a special meeting with an executive session on Friday, January 5. It was to "consider the dismissal or disciplining of, or to hear complaints or charges brought against, a public officer, employee, staff member or individual agent who does not request an open hearing."
After the executive session, the petition claims Commissioners Angi Chrisitan, Andy Martin, Roger Thompson, and Jan Barbas voted to fire the port manager.
The petition argues this is illegal, because the Board did not give Dehlinger an "opportunity for an open hearing; this suggests a violation of ORS 192.660 (b)." It also says it was a breach of the "Port Manager's contract regarding the Notice of Termination."
The county will work to verify the signatures, and the commissioners will have an opportunity to submit their statement of justifications. If an election is scheduled, Windham says those statements will be included on the ballot.
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