The recall election for Pleasant Hill’s city clerk demanded by some residents in recent months is no longer needed.
Kim Lehmkuhl resigned from her post as city clerk with a scathing email on Monday after facing ridicule in recent months for failing to produce a single set of City Council meeting minutes during her first year in office.
In the email sent to Mayor Tim Flaherty and City Manager June Catalano, Lehmkuhl described her time working for the city as an “atrocious, incredibly depressing, and mind-numbingly inane experience I would not wish on anyone.”
“I wish the City the best of luck in finding some schmuck eager to transcribe every last misogynistic joke, self-indulgent anecdote, and pathetic pandering attempt by Council, and every tinfoil hat conspiracy theory, racist aside, and NIMBY asshattery from the lovely council meeting frequent flyers, without which, surely our democracy could not flourish,” she wrote.
Lehmkuhl could not be reached for comment today.
Her resignation comes after repeated calls for a special election to recall Lehmkuhl after it came to light in January that she hadn’t produced the minutes for any City Council meetings since taking office in November 2012.
More recently, it was discovered that she did not attend a county workshop to educate city clerks about election procedures, according to the mayor.
Some residents were also irked by her opinionated, often sarcastic Twitter posts during council meeting proceedings, according to city officials.
She has accepted a position at Work America, an advocacy organization for non-unionized workers in Washington, D.C., according to her Twitter account. The Twitter account she used as city clerk has been taken down.
Flaherty said today that Lehmkuhl’s resignation is “a relief” and the best thing for the city.
“The controversy over the lack of performance by the city clerk was not only a financial drain on the city’s resources but also a strain on the city staff,” he said. “It was a distraction from the work of staff and City Council.”
The mayor said he would have fired Lehmkuhl last December when he learned that she hadn’t produced any meeting minutes, but didn’t have the authority to do so since she was an elected official.
Flaherty said he also suggested cutting the roughly $528 monthly stipend allotted for the part-time position but was advised against it by the city’s attorney.
At least, he said, the city can now forgo a $20,000 recall election.
The City Council has 60 days to appoint a city clerk to fill Lehmkuhl’s spot or to call a special election.
In March, the council agreed to place an item on the November ballot asking voters whether the city clerk should be appointed instead of being elected.