At the end of 2019, a coalition of veterans, longtime Irvine residents, and university community members joined together to serve a “Notice of Intention” to circulate recall petitions to remove Mayor Christina Shea and Councilmember Michael Carroll from office for a variety of reasons. Neither Shea nor Carroll were elected to the positions they currently hold on the Irvine City Council. Both have angered Irvine voters with their relentless efforts to defeat the long-planned Veterans Memorial Park & Cemetery at the original 125-acre, City-owned “ARDA” site in the Great Park. Moreover, Shea and Carroll have been working to enable developer FivePoint to gain control of the property for massive office, commercial, and industrial development, despite strong resident opposition.
For some weeks now, Irvine Community News & Views has been asking our readers to weigh-in on the proposed recall by participating in our online Irvine Community Poll.
When asked if they favor recalling and removing from office Mayor Christina Shea and Councilmember Michael Carroll, 500+ respondents expressed overwhelming support for the recall of the two: 90% said YES to recall Shea; 89% said YES to recall Carroll.
In addition to taking the poll, the community has been offering a surprising number of comments explaining why they support the recall. Only a handful of residents have opposed the recall and left a comment in support of Shea and Carroll. Below, are the results of our poll and a representative sampling of the comments we’ve received.
It is unconscionable that Shea has twice refused to honor the wishes of the people of Irvine who voted for, and won, the right to have the Veterans Cemetery built on the original “ARDA” proposed site. How many more times will we have to sign petitions to get her to acquiesce and do right by the people she supposedly serves? Shea should have been ousted last year. Let’s get this done!
— A. Gill
Both Mayor Shea and Councilman Carroll have repeatedly abused the trust and the obvious will of their constituents. Further commercial development in Irvine is not only unnecessary, it is harmful to our Irvine community.
— Diane Greenberg
I cannot understand why Mayor Shea and Councilmember Carroll refuse to go along with the great majority of the people of Irvine. Couldn’t they see this recall petition coming?
— William Tucker
I am so tired of officials ignoring what the people vote for. But, it is the people who have the real power! When officials turn their backs on us, let us show them the door.
— Judy Stephens
We need City officials who will carry out the will of the people, plain and simple. Shea and Carroll continue to blatantly disregard what we voters decided, as evidenced by the defeat of Measure B. They must be removed.
— Tony Rodriguez
Shea is a complete disgrace as a person and a Mayor. She must go. We must restore integrity, honor, and respect for the voice and vote of the people. The City deserves better.
— Randall B. Grunbaum (U.S. Army Ret.)
I am beyond appalled by FivePoint. Citizens are fed up with the power of money and corruption. Shame on our City Council for not respecting the will of the people. Recall is not my favorite approach, but corruption is an urgent matter. I certainly hope that the ARDA site is retained, not the undemocratic Councilmembers and those who supported their appointments.
— Luette Forrest
Shea and Carroll fail to represent the citizens of Irvine. They pander to and are in the pocket of FivePoint. The bias in favor of aggressive development is obvious. They are not serving the people who elected them. The Veterans Cemetery site is a good example. They must go.
— Kathy Tahilramani
How many times do we need to reaffirm our decision and vote that the Veterans Memorial be in the Great Park? And now, two appointed Irvine representatives are ignoring and reversing the votes of the majority of Irvine residents. This is not right.
— Sue E. Martin
We need and want City officials who support the will of people! Recall both Shea and Carroll.
— Arnold Mendoza
These two have been ignoring the vote on the ARDA site and acting like dictators. Now they want to encroach on the proposed golf course leaving the ARDA site for developer FivePoint to make more money. This will affect the Irvine Boulevard traffic, making it much worse.
— Sanjay Dhar
It’s about time action is being taken to remove those who have betrayed the people of Irvine and especially our veterans who so deserve the ARDA site that was first chosen for the Veterans Cemetery.
— Pat Wheeler
Can’t happen soon enough! Politicians have to be held accountable.
— Patricia Ewers
It’s disgraceful for people in office using the office to benefit themselves. Do they not understand the position they hold is to serve the City and community they are in?
— Kenan Chaballout
The sooner they’re gone, the better! Christina Shea is a disgrace.
— David Proctor III
It is a shame that Mayor Shea and Councilman Carroll refuse to accept the majority of Irvine citizens who want to keep the Veterans Cemetery in the Great Park. Over 60 % of Irvine voters voted for it last year.
— Richard Sarlitt
Neither Christina Shea nor Michael Carroll were elected to their positions on the City Council and they continue to ignore the people’s mandate about the Veterans Cemetery. They must be recalled before they give away the ARDA site to the developers.
— Shawn Mela, Proud Marine Corps Veteran
— Steven Yang
This recall is long overdue! Christina Shea controls the Council meetings with no regard for the rule of law. She interrupts private citizens during public comments and calls out private citizens by name from the dais to shame them. She brings motions before the City Council from a developer who financially supported her last campaign, and she refuses to recuse herself from the vote.
— Dee Fox
I have lived in Irvine for over 45 years and was born and raised in Orange County, specifically Tustin. I vote in every election and actively follow informational media. I have never been so astonished and outraged at such blatant disregard of the voters’ will regarding the Veterans Cemetery, beginning with the very first vote to create and establish it at the Great Park. Shea and Carrol must go. It’s way past time.
— Cindy Eddleman
Why would they ignore the voters and try to put more development in this area? So, yes, we as voters should be able to remove them from office.
— Kevin Hoagland
I am a 79-year-old veteran who served as a Naval officer during the Vietnam War. This decision is clear. Honor our veterans and our nation, build the Veterans Memorial Park & Cemetery.
— Grayson Sanders
Anyone that thinks they know better than the residents they represent do not belong in office. If we let them, they will “sell out” all of the property in the Great Park to FivePoint so they continue to get kickbacks in terms of campaign funding. Stop them now!
— Sheila Nyberg
The citizens of Orange County must be made aware of the rising corruption and malfeasance permeating our city and county officials. We demand unfettered transparency using outside forensic accounting on select communities and associated councilmembers and officials. They have violated their oath to serve the citizens of their respective cities and county.
— Michael Yawn
First…The Mayor does not have the right to go against public sentiment. Second…Solve the existing traffic problems in the city before you think of expansion!
Unfortunately, I am not a resident of your great community anymore, so I cannot vote. It is with great sadness that Irvine has to deal with this issue. My wonderful Navy pilot friend (45-year resident of Irvine) and his dear wife are still sitting on their daughter’s fireplace mantle waiting for your victory. God bless you and your commitment.
— Mary Bossy
Leave them alone. I respect and honor Mayor Christina Shea and support all her decisions for the good of the Irvine community.
— Edgardo Abalos
Christina and Michael do the right job. The Veterans Cemetery should be located in some other place.
— Nikolas (no last name)
I am a Great Park resident and I do not want a Veterans Cemetery in my neighborhood!
— Name Withheld
I don’t want a Veterans Cemetery!
— Name Withheld