LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- A recall petition against embattled City Councilman Kevin de León was approved by the Los Angeles city clerk, allowing organizers to begin collecting signatures.
Organizers must collect 20,437 signatures from registered voters of the 14th District by March 31, according to the city clerk's office. Organizers say their goal is to collect 25,000 signatures.
An intent to recall de León was filed in October by five residents of the 14th District, including Pauline Adkins, who led two prior unsuccessful recall attempts of de León.
De León, along with Councilman Gil Cedillo, has defied fierce and widespread calls to resign for taking part in a recorded 2021 conversation that involved racist comments and attempts to manipulate the redistricting process.
"We just don't trust him anymore. He has no future" in Council District 14, Adkins, a constituent who has lived in the district for 54 years, said in an interview with ABC7. "It's his choice to resign or get recalled out."
Under the statement of reasons in the notice of intent, the organizers cited de León's refusal to resign over the scandal.
"Even though the City Council has called for his resignation, and have stripped him of his committee assignments, Kevin de León has refused to resign," the statement reads. "He currently cannot represent the stakeholders of Council District 14."
Cedillo cannot be recalled because there is not enough time before his term expires next week. He lost his reelection bid in the June primary.
City Council President Nury Martinez and labor leader Ron Herrera were also caught on the recorded conversation.
Martinez resigned soon after the recorded conversation became public, and Herrera also stepped down as president of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor.
De León's term runs until December 2024. He has not attended a council meeting since Oct. 11.
"I know some people are thinking why are we bothering, what are we doing," Adkins said. "But he can't help us anymore."
City News Service contributed to this report.
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