OCEANSIDE — The newest member of City Council was served a recall petition notice at a council workshop late last month.
Councilmember Kori Jensen was appointed in January to fill the District 1 council seat left vacant by Esther Sanchez, who was elected as the city’s mayor in November.
Jensen’s appointment to council stirred controversy within the city among residents who say she lied about her place of residency. City Council members are required to live in Oceanside to hold office.
She applied for the open council seat with the address 815 N. Pacific St. Prior to her taking office, the home was listed on Airbnb as a short-term vacation rental.
Jensen also owns a home in Carlsbad, where some believed she actually lived. Jensen assured The Coast News in February that she lived at the North Pacific Street home while her son lives at the Carlsbad home with his family.
According to Jensen, she permanently resides on North Pacific Street and no longer rents it out as a short-term vacation rental.
The recall petition notice, signed by 25 residents and submitted by Cynthia Davenport, again asserts that Jensen lied about where she lives and has refused to provide proof that she lived there. The petition notice also states that Jensen isn’t qualified to serve on City Council based on her lack of experience.
“Jensen has no experience to represent District One voters — she never served on any commissions or committees, never attended any community meetings or civic activity,” the petition notice states.
Davenport told City Council during its April 28 council workshop that proponents of the recall petition want to see Jensen removed from office and demand that a successor be elected rather than appointed.
Jensen isn’t the first councilmember in recent years to receive a notice of intent to recall from disgruntled residents.
In early 2020, both Sanchez and District 2’s Christopher Rodriguez received notices for recall petitions. An earlier attempt to recall Rodriguez occurred in late 2019 but fell through after the City Clerk’s office found insufficiencies in the petition.
The recall attempts on both Sanchez and Rodriguez expired a few months later in June 2020. Rodriguez would have needed 4,456 signatures from District 2 and Sanchez would have needed 3,944 signatures from District 1, the district that Jensen now represents. The number of voters in each district determines the number of signatures required for recall.
“The advocates of ugly political partisanship have unfortunately injected themselves yet again into our community by sponsoring yet another recall in Oceanside,” Jensen told The Coast News. “Their ridiculous statements are false, but knowing the proponents I’m not surprised.”
Jensen is confident that this attempt to recall her will fail like the previous ones against Rodriguez and Sanchez.
“We have a lot to accomplish on behalf of my beloved Oceanside community, so I will continue working hard every day for the residents of my council district,” Jensen said.