Mike Hillman Faces Possible Recall As Idaho Springs Mayor

CLEAR CREEK COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4) – Idaho Springs in sleepy Clear Creek County is in the middle of some change. That all could be slowing because of efforts to recall Mayor Mike Hillman.

Mike Hillman (credit: Colorado)

Major infrastructure projects are being completed and plans for major development to bring housing and new business to town. However, not everyone is on board with some residents blaming the mayor.

For the first time in this town, where the gold rush started, the mayor could be forced out.

“I never thought I’d face a recall as mayor. I’ve poured my heart into this job, and we are accomplishing some amazing things,” the embattled mayor told CBS4 Tuesday.

Supporters of the recall say under Hillman’s watch, they have lost confidence in the city government. They collected the signatures needed to force a special recall election.

Those signatures were certified Monday during a city council meeting.

(credit: CBS)

Amanda Kowalewski, Janet Diederichs and Candace Voisard, all from Idaho Springs, submitted the petition.

They claim:

  • Significant erosion of public confidence in city government during Hillman’s administration;
  • Failure to adequately supervise planning staff, and, by failing to do so, allowing decisions to be made at staff level without public input or review that profoundly impact the property rights and quality of life of Idaho Springs residents; and
  • Allowing unresolved conflicts of interest by City Council members to occur
    Hillman says under Colorado law, the bar to recall elected officials isn’t very high and he thinks that needs to change or else no one is going to actually want to run for these important jobs in towns and cities across our state. It isn’t clear when we could see the recall go before the 1,200 registered voters here but the mayor says he will fight to keep his job as this political drama plays out on the streets of this old mining town.

Whether the mayor will get to keep his job for two more years rests with 1,200 registered voters.

Hillman says being a small town mayor is a big time job, especially as Idaho Springs gears up for several major development plans – which included the Argo mine gondola, housing and new businesses.

Those are projects Hillman pushed for and supported.

Hillman has been serving as mayor since 2013.