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Recall proponents stop efforts in Atascadero 

Two Atascadero City Council members are publicly thanking their supporters after opponents abandoned an effort to launch a recall effort against them.

"The recall attempt was a great distraction from our duties at City Hall and disruptive to our families and the Atascadero community," council memebers Mike Brennler and Ellen Beraud wrote in a joint letter. "We remain committed to our obligation to serve our community, including those among us who, at times, disagree with our positions."

The recall attempt was launched in May by area businessmen Ray Buban and Mike Jackson, who said they were angered by a variety of council decisions including a then-pending ordinance that would have put in place new, larger, development buffer zones around area creeks and rivers. That effort was overturned through a separate referendum process.

In the actual petition to start the recall, the duo argued that the council members should be recalled, in part, due to decisions that had been made by the planning commission which Brennler and Beraud do not serve on and also for "imposing excessive/punitive requirements on those that would build here."

But the recall attempt, launched within the first year that Brennler and Beraud were first elected, met public opposition, with letters regularly appearing in community newspapers supporting the council members. Buban and Jackson would have had to present some 3,000 signatures, representing 20 percent of city voters, for their effort to City Clerk Marcia Torgerson by Oct. 18.

"We have decided with tremendous soul searching and discussion in the interest of the common good to halt the process of a recall and to focus our energy and resources on the next election," Buban wrote in a letter announcing the end of the effort.

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