Don’t you all hate to be scammed? It’s even worse when it happens to us right on Main Street in our own little town.

Twenty-six local residents, frustrated with local politics, have started a recall procedure against Mayor Alan Galbraith.

But, they want all the rest of us to do their dirty work by getting 800 residents to sign the petition that would lead to a special election to recall an innocent man.

Scam #1: They have a signature table in front of the post office with a misleading sign that reads: “Consider recall … More hotels? More traffic? Less water?” It’s obvious to me that they are using this scare copy trick to attract potential signers. But it makes me angry that they think all 5,000 townspeople are gullible enough to think recalling Alan will somehow fix or correct this things. Each has been debated for years -- long before most of us ever got here.

Scam # 2: On a recent Monday, I was standing at the table and an interested person (I don’t know who he was) asked some questions to learn more about the reasons for the recall. I heard the following answers to those questions:

* “If an Adams Street hotel is built, hotel workers will park in the neighborhoods.”

* Alan was somehow responsible for some “wastewater problem somewhere in town.”

* Somehow “Alan was the leader of the City Council” in reply to the person’s thought that maybe the blame could be spread wider. Just for the record, Alan is often on the short side of a 2-3 council vote.

Tell me how firing Alan as Mayor will fix these selected problems?

Alan has done nothing wrong; there is no reason for this frivolous recall attempt. Isn’t it interesting that as Alan became more of an effective, activist leader, he has become criticized. We need an activist leader who considers and acts on issues that can benefit all of us -- not just the few.

So, just “Decline To Sign” that recall petition and ask your friends, neighbors and cohorts to do the same.

Who among us wants to put a permanent black mark against the name of one of our own neighbors? How can we expect new blood in the form of business leaders to create new jobs, merchants to help round out our retail core as well as teachers and firemen to want to come to a town that recalls an innocent city leader?

Have you already signed -- and wished you didn’t? Don’t worry. There’s a simple, easy procedure for withdrawal of signatures.

“Initial signature withdrawal period: Any voter may withdraw his or her signature from the recall petition upon filing a written request with the city elections official prior to the day the petition is filed.” (Elections Code §§ 103, 11303). That request needs to include your name, address and a signature.

Bill Ryan

St. Helena