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Group begins collecting signatures to try to recall Sebastian Council members Damien Gilliams, Pamela Parris, Charles Mauti

Organizers believe they have already collected at least 1,900 signed petitions
Posted at 9:57 PM, May 20, 2020

SEBASTIAN, Fla. — Efforts to recall three Sebastian Council members began Wednesday.

A group organizing the recall effort against Damien Gilliams, Pamela Parris and Charles Mauti started collecting signed petitions at Riverview Park.

Chris Nunn, an organizer of the group Sebastian Voters Against Gilliams and Parris, said they already collected almost all of the petitions they need for the first phase of the potential recall process. He estimated they had at least 1,900 signatures as of Wednesday afternoon.

Nunn explained he helped organize the group in February when voters began losing trust in Gilliams and Parris.

An alleged illegal meeting on April 22 motivated the group even more to try to remove Gilliams and Parris from their positions. Mauti, a third council member at that meeting, joined their list of council members they no longer support.

Mauti apologized for his actions at a May special meeting.

"Come to the illegal meeting. It's kind of like your neighbor breaking into your house," Nunn said. "He can apologize, but are you ever really going to trust your neighbor again?"

RELATED: Sebastian leaders will have to meet a third time to vote on issues stemming from 'secret meeting' concerns

Voters like Jeanne Pierce signed petitions to recall all three council members.

"Oh, I just think these guys are ridiculous," Pierce said. "Too many people don't vote and don't have a clue what's going on around here."

Gilliams showed up at the Wednesday recall effort, claiming the group needed a permit to reserve the park for their mission. The parks department for the city of Sebastian confirmed former Sebastian Police Chief Michelle Morris paid the fee to reserve the park and filled out the proper application. A permit is not needed for the size and purpose of the recall effort.

The petition signing will continue at Riverview Park from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday.