By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Three Hughson councilmen recalled
Placeholder Image
Voters in Hughson issued a sharp rebuke of councilmen Thom Crowder, Doug Humphreys and Ben Manley Tuesday, ousting all three in a special recall election.

Frustration started building up in Hughson after the Stanislaus County Civil Grand Jury found council members Manley, Humphreys and Thom Crowder in violation of the Brown Act, the Hughson Municipal Code and the Fair Political Practices Code and Regulations in December 2009. The Grand Jury recommended that all three step down.

Close to 90 percent of Tuesday's turnout agreed that all three members should go. Crowder and Humphreys refused to step down but Manley resigned 22 days before the election but after the ballots were printed.

The voters elected Gerald Carr to replace Crowder after 86 percent of the voters said Crowder should be recalled and 14 percent said no. Carr received 651 votes, or 64 percent, over Miguel Osguera's 366 votes (36 percent).

Carr is a 52-year-old technical analyst for AT&T.

Humphrey's replacement will be Jeramy Young who received 712 votes, or 69 percent. He far outdistanced Gary Houx who picked up 306 votes, or 30 percent. A total of 981 voters said Humphreys needed to go. The councilman found 141 supporters, who amounted to just 13 percent of the turnout.

Young, 38, is a Modesto Police sergeant.

Although he already resigned, Manley generated 994 recall voters (89 percent), as opposed to 121 who said he should stay. In his stead the voters chose Jill Silva (894 votes or 85 percent) over Billy Gonzalez (154 votes or 15 percent).

Silva is a 46-year-old assistant chief probation officer for Stanislaus County.

"I am excited for the city to move forward," said Silva.

A concerned Hughson citizens group called the Citizens for Better City Government asked the three council members to resign on multiple occasions. Seeing no results, they took matters into their own hands and spearheaded the recall election.

Crowder, who owns Hughson Ambulance Company, tried to use his influence as a councilman to gain favor with a competitor for work, said the grand jury. He denied the accusation and said the "grand jury is unconstitutional" and that "they have little credibility and they did a bad job of investigating."

In April Crowder said he wouldn't give up the fight, even if recalled. He vowed to run for mayor.

The special election will end up costing Hughson taxpayers $23,000.