Flint, MI– Flint resident Arthur Woodson filed recall language against Mayor Sheldon Neeley at 9:30 this morning. 

Woodson said he decided to file a recall to “make him understand that people are getting tired of this foolishness.”

“He hasn’t told us any plans…to let us know the direction of the city,” he said. “Blight, safety, we don’t know anything. He doesn’t come to city council. He talked about Karen Weaver not showing up, then he got in there and did worse than she did.” 

The exact language used in his recall paperwork had to do with Neeley’s lack of presenting a State of the City Address before the end of his first year in office:

“Mayor Sheldon A. Neeley did not comply with Section 4-103 as cited in the new Flint City Charter adopted by voters on August 7, 2017, and became effective January 1, 2018, that at least once a year the Mayor shall present the State of the City Address to the city council and to the public at large.” 

But the mayor says there has not been any violation of the charter, and that he will be delivering a State of the City this year.

“We had originally intended to deliver the State of the City in person earlier this year. Due to COVID-19 shutdowns as well as other precautionary measures put in place to protect and preserve lives, those plans were delayed,” Neeley said in a statement. “However, we already have made arrangements to deliver the State of the City in a new way, in fact, a better and more inclusive way in the coming weeks. “

But Woodson says his problems with the mayor go beyond that. He said he’s unsatisfied with the way he’s handled issues with the water, housing, and poverty. 

“He’s not talking about the water. He went door-to-door for his wife to campaign but didn’t go door-to-door to get samples to make sure the water was safe,” he said. 

Woodson said he feels the mayor’s focus has been in the downtown area.

“He’s not working for the north side or the east side or for the people,” he said. “When have you heard him put anything in place besides trick-or-treating? All they like to do is give away free turkeys and ham. They don’t bring housing…they don’t look to see how they can help people on the north side accumulate generational wealth.” 

This is not Woodson’s first time submitting recall paperwork. He filed recall language against Councilman Maurice Davis last year, and Former Mayor Karen Weaver in 2017.

Neeley called this recall an attempt to “mislead and cause chaos at a critical time in this community.”

“We have seen this individual make accusations against government officials before and later retract them,” he said. “We will not be distracted. Our focus will remain on saving lives in this community.”

Woodson said he will need around 8,000 signatures, if the language gets approved. 

The Genesee County Election Commission has yet to schedule a meeting to vote on the language.

Amy Diaz is a journalist hailing from St. Petersburg, FL. She has written for multiple local newspapers in her hometown before becoming a full-time reporter for Flint Beat. When she’s not writing you...