GONZALES, La. (AP) — Timothy Vessel became the first Gonzales councilman to be recalled in the history of the city on Saturday, when 75 percent of the voters cast ballots to oust him.

Chuck LeBlanc, chairman of the recall effort Save Gonzales, tells The Advocate that after a nine-month drive, the group was elated.

Vessel faced the recall election alone after former Councilman Gary Lacombe, also targeted for recall by the grass-roots organization, avoided the election when he resigned Nov. 25.

The recall effort against the two men was launched in April in large part because of bloc voting on the council.

The councilmen repeatedly outvoted Councilmen Kenny Matassa and Kirk Boudreaux, rejecting rezoning requests along the way and making changes to city budgets that led to budget vetoes by Mayor Barney Arceneaux.