Pamela Price recall team kicks off signature collection

Recall organizers say they have until March 5, 2024, to collect more than 73,000 signatures, which they expect will cost about $2 million.

Pamela Price recall team kicks off signature collection
Carl Chan and Brenda Grisham, who are leading the effort to recall DA Pamela Price, speak to the media at a press conference Thursday, Oct. 12, 2023. Emilie Raguso/Aipsasiamedia

Signature collection began this week in the effort to recall DA Pamela Price, with a public kick-off event planned Sunday for those who wish to sign, organizers announced.

Price recall proponents say they have until March 5, 2024, to collect more than 73,000 signatures, which they expect will cost about $2 million.

Carl Chan and Brenda Grisham, who are leading the effort to recall Alameda County DA Pamela Price, held a press conference Thursday morning to provide updates on the campaign.

They said the lack of accountability for repeat offenders and Price's treatment of victims and their families drove them to push for a recall.

"This is not politics. It’s about public safety," Chan said.

"What we really want is people to be held accountable," Grisham added. "It’s a grassroots fight to make a difference."

Read more about Pamela Price on The Scanner.

Pamela Price supporters say she is doing what she was elected to do by reducing charging and sentencing and working to seek alternatives to incarceration.

Her campaign has said the recall effort is driven by "outside special interest groups" who are "trying to seize control from local voters because they refuse to accept the results of a legitimate, democratic election to remove the status quo."

The Price campaign has not responded to repeated requests for comment and has not posted online about the recall since late August.

A related "Protect the Win" campaign effort to support Price is also underway.

Price recall signature event comes Sunday

Thursday's press conference took place at 1711 International Blvd. in Oakland where Sunday's signature collection event will also happen.

The small storefront at Suite 103 is the home of the Christopher LaVell Jones Foundation Resource Office, the nonprofit Grisham formed after her son was killed in Oakland.

Grisham said she now holds classes and therapy groups at the resource center and believed it would be an appropriate place for Sunday's event.

"It's making it more personal to the fight that we’re fighting," she said.

Many families who have lost loved ones to gun violence in Alameda County have joined the recall effort and will be present at Sunday's event, which runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Organizers said there will be security as well as information tables and voter registration at the event, which will take place outdoors.

The campaign, dubbed Save Alameda For Everyone (SAFE), filed its notice of intent to pursue the recall in August and was approved to begin signature collection two weeks ago.

The clock to recall DA Pamela Price starts now
Critics say Price had contributed to Oakland’s crime wave by being soft on crime. Supporters say Price is doing what she was elected to do.

On Thursday morning, Grisham said 1,900 people have already signed up as recall volunteers, which organizers expect will cut down on campaign costs.

"I’ve heard from Livermore. I’ve heard from Dublin. I’ve heard from Pleasanton, Fremont," she said. "We have a lot of people that are behind what we’re doing and they’re ready to step up."

Professional signature gatherers began their work three days ago, Chan said.

Chan said he's also printed 1,000 petition forms that he'll give out to local businesses and volunteers who undergo basic training in how to collect valid signatures.

Organizers also urged community members to pay close attention to what they are signing when it comes to the recall — in part because a community survey by an unaffiliated group is also making the rounds.

Homicide victim families demand recall of DA Pamela Price
“As a mother, I cannot accept this,” one woman said. “How can you protect your community if you’re going to do that?”

Price recall campaign finances are an open question

This week, Price recall organizers declined to share how much money they've raised so far. They said fundraisers are planned in the coming weeks and months.

They said the bulk of the money raised at this point will go toward paid signature collection.

If the group collects the requisite number of valid signatures by March, the campaign will move into its next phase: raising awareness about the actual recall election, which could take place in June 2024.

On Thursday, the Alameda County Registrar of Voters office said campaign finance details may not be posted online at this time because a recall effort is different from a typical campaign.

The Scanner will continue to research that question.

Election laws do require the recall campaign to publish its top donor.

For now, that's a group called Reviving the Bay Area.

According to campaign filings, Reviving the Bay Area names Stacy Owens, Peter Sullivan, Isaac Abid and Philip Dreyfuss as its principal officers.

Dreyfuss, who was listed along with Carl Chan and Brenda Grisham on the original recall paperwork, is a partner at Farallon Capital and was a major donor in the successful recall of former SF DA Chesa Boudin.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Dreyfuss contributed $10,000 to the Boudin recall effort at some point.

Since August, one group has filed an independent expenditure form in relation to the Price recall effort: Peterson Properties, an Oakland real estate firm, gave $10,000 to SAFE on Aug. 29, according to campaign filings.

The Price campaign's most recent filing, from Aug. 1, shows nearly $30,000 in contributions received this year through June, the bulk of which ($25,000) came from Quinn Delaney.

No other financial information related to the Price recall appeared to be available in Alameda County election filings as of publication time.

Learn about the Pamela Price "Protect the Win" campaign and the Pamela Price recall effort on their respective websites.

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Editor's note: Due to an editing error, this story initially linked Philip Dreyfuss to the Price recall petition. The story has been fixed. Campaign finance information was also added to the story after publication.