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Griggs Co. Commissioners Up for Recall - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Griggs Co. Commissioners Up for Recall

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The Griggs County Commission is in hot water with many voters and the North Dakota Attorney General. That's after the Attorney General ruled the Commission violated open meetings and open records laws this year when they approved a new $3 million courthouse without a popular vote.

John Wakefield, the man who spear-headed the open records and open meetings complaint, says the ruling should be evidence to voters that their elected officials are acting out of line. Now, many want these commissioners out so they don't do something like this again.

"The whole purpose of it was to give the choice back to the citizens of Griggs County," Wakefield said.

When he needed the documents to challenge the Building Authority of the new multi-million dollar courthouse, he says they made him wait for months before releasing them.

"Without the information I requested, I wasn't able to get that done. They held on to that information until the bond was issued and then they gave it to me," he said.

Now, prosecutors say that's not legal. But, for Wakefield, that's not enough.

"Justice won't be served until the citizens decide what form of government they want."

All commissioners are up for recall this October. Though, the fate of the courthouse remains up in the air.

"I assume, if the county commissioners are put out of office, the new county commissioners won't have any say. The Building Authority will continue building the building," Wakefield said.

But, the goal has been the same for Wakefield from the beginning: to give choices back to voters. He says the main point is to do no more financial harm to the county and to mitigate any future harm.

The recall election is set for October 8th. Current county commissioners declined to comment. Wakefield is running for one of those open seats.

He says all candidates are running on the platform that the elected officials of the county should be more accountable to citizens.

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