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Columbia councilwoman responds to recall petition

A group of Columbia residents have collected more than 400 signatures on a petition to recall First Ward city councilwoman Ginny Chadwick.

The group will present the signatures to the city clerk’s office next week.

Chadwick told ABC 17 she was unaware of the petition until a news release was distributed.

And when asked about what she though of the recall petition Saturday, Chadwick said the group of constituents asked the city council to put laws into place that are not legal.

“We are a very progressive city, but it doesn’t mean that I don’t speak for all the constituents of the first ward,” Chadwick said. “And so I have to consider what everybody’s thinking, and as an elected official I make laws that we can uphold and uphold the laws that we have in place.”

Petitions will be given to the city clerk at 9:00 Monday morning.

The petition was created by local marijuana reform groups after Chadwick failed to keep her campaign promise to support an ordinance that would have decriminalized having a small amount of marijuana for personal or medical use.

Chadwick’s reversal led to the defeat of the measure.

“On marijuana, I had said during a forum when I was running for office that I supported the concept of marijuana legalization and that I though Columbia was an innovator,” Chadwick said. “And through the public hearing process, it was very clear that we didn’t really have the legal authority to put that ordinance in place that we were putting forward, that it was going to be in conflict with the state and federal law.”

Several other groups joined an alliance in reaction to Chadwick’s action on other issues, according to a news release.

That alliance is made up of the Students for Sensible Drug Policy and the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, Keep Columbia Free, and CoMO Council Watch.

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