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Mayor’s Veto Rides

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September 6, 2010 by wcobserver

Council Appoints “Neutral” Party

By Susan McCarthy

Greenland- Johney Boles stood before Greenland’s city council Monday evening, asking them to not over-ride Mayor Gray’s veto of a council vote that had seated him in a vacant city council position less than two weeks ago.

“I ask the council to not over-ride the veto,” Boles said offering to step aside.  I withdraw my name from consideration.”   Boles said he was concerned about the negative impact this would have on the city of Greenland and said he had received calls from people outside the city asking, “What in the world is going on in the City of Greenland?”

Boles said he has once again decided to run for city council in the November election.

Boles then nominated Tom Hendricks for the Ward 4, positon 1 council seat, and all six council members present voted to seat Hendricks to the position vacated by Mark Meyers who resigned last month after moving out of the ward.  Council Member Lisa Thornton was absent.

Hendricks, who serves on the city’s planning commission is not a candidate in the November election and is viewed as a neutral party to fill the vacancy. Hendricks said that Mayor John Gray called him last week and asked him if he’d be willing to serve on the council until after the election.

Gray rescinded his nomination for Boles days after the Aug. 9 city council meeting and had requested the special meeting Monday night to “correct an error I made in the last meeting.”

Gray said he felt that the position should be filled by someone not running in the November election and had consulted the city’s attorney, Danny Wright, after the Aug. 9 meeting to determine the best way to rescind his nomination and veto the council’s appointment of Boles.

“I don’t know what happened,” Gray said Monday night.  I just know I treated her (Brenda Reynolds) unfairly.  I need to back this whole thing up.”

Gray admitted he had forgotten about a conversation he had had with Brenda Reynolds in which she expressed interest in the vacancy before leaving for vacation.  During the Aug. 9 council meeting, Gray nominated Boles to the position and the council confirmed Boles to the vacant seat.  Neither Reynolds nor Boles were present at the Aug. 9 meeting.  After Gray’s nomination, Council Member Greg White asked if anyone else had expressed interest in the position and Council Member Johnny James said that Brenda Reynolds was interested in filling the vacancy.  Gray said he didn’t recall her speaking to him at that time.  Both Reynolds and Boles had announced that they would be running for the Ward 4, Position 1 council seat in the November election.

“None of the candidates will have a leg-up or an enhanced position going into the election,” said Wright.

In other city council action, city officials authorized Wright to continue to move forward with the demolition process of two nuisance properties located at 57 and 85 W. Roadrunner Street despite new information Wright obtained that could increase demolition costs $2000-$3000 and lengthen the process of recovering funds paid for the demolition.  Wright said he will now finalize the contract for low-bidder American Excavating, in Lincoln and said they will have 30 days to complete the demolition after a contract is signed.

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