“Questions Surround Yelm City Council Candidate’s Residency Claims”
“Yelm City Council candidate Matthew McLellan is facing legal questions about where he lives and about his eligibility to assume office if elected.”
- Editor’s note: The aforementioned headlines are from a very thoroughly researched media release from the campaign of Joe DePinto for Council, with corresponding public documents from the Thurston County Auditor. Matthew McLellan is a challenger for council position 6 against incumbent Joe DePinto. Mr. McLellan was contacted for a comment and at time of publication, this blog had received no response. The following is from the campaign of Joe DePinto:
“Yelm City Council candidate Matthew McLellan is facing legal questions about where he lives and about his eligibility to assume office if elected.
“Candidates for public office must be legally qualified to assume office at the time of filing. They affirm, under oath, that they are citizens of the United States, are registered to vote, are residents of a political district, and possess all other qualifications specified by law.
“Revised Code of Washington 35A.12.030 as adopted by Yelm Municipal Code: 1.02.040 requires that ‘No person shall be eligible to hold elective office under the mayor-council plan (of government) unless the person is a registered voter of the city at the time of filing his declaration of candidacy and has been a resident of the city for a period of at least one year next preceding his election.’
“Upon reviewing the conditions of his eligibility, our campaign determined that Yelm City Council candidate Matthew McLellan did not meet the qualifications specified by law to legally assume office if elected.
“A public records request was submitted to the Thurston County Auditor’s Office requesting a review of McLellan’s voter registration records including his previous physical and mailing addresses and election history.”
“Election records show that McLellan participated in the November 2018 General Election and the February 2019 Special Election, affirming under penalty of perjury, that his permanent residence at the time was…outside the city limits in unincorporated Thurston County.
“Upon further review, election records provided by the Thurston County Auditor’s Office indicate that a change of residency, but not mailing address, was updated in March of 2019 to: [an address inside Yelm’s city limits].
“The results of our investigation provide only two possible explanations: that McLellan does not currently possess the qualifications required by law to assume office if elected, or that he knowingly falsified information in recent elections, or on his declaration of candidacy for Yelm City Council – it is now in the public interest that an explanation be provided on both questions.”
Blogger Klein is a Joe DePinto for Council campaign supporter and contributor.