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City Clerk Goes Off On Mayor


October 31, 2013 by wcobserver

By Steve Winkler–

There’s an unwritten understanding that very little can be accomplished by one elected official “bad mouthing” another elected official in the same small town government, especially on the city email for all to see.(due to FOIA)

City Clerk Marsha Hungate

Perhaps it’s because she’s a first time public official but West Fork’s City Clerk Marsha Hungate evidently didn’t get the we’re-all-in-this-together memo.

It appears the Clerk wants to jump in on the “Get Frances” frenzy that has absorbed the City Council for the two years since Mayor Frances Hime was elected in a close vote. Hime promised voters to bring the city into the twenty-first century and create an open government with accountability and rational policies aimed at growth and prosperity. That’s not the way it’s always been done in West Fork.

Feathers have been ruffled. Boats have been rocked. Noses have been bent out of shape. Mayor Hime shrugged off a Council vote of no confidence several months ago and has employed reason and common sense to bolster her position and garner the support of the citizens,leaving the theatrics to her critics. She is arguably the first “real” mayor the town has ever had.

Now it’s Ms. Hungates turn to take a swing at telling the mayor how to be mayor.

This particular flap grew from a special Planning Commission meeting called

Mayor Frances Hime

at the request of some members (not the often absent Chairperson) to approve a Planning Boundary Resolution that needed to go to the city council before their next meeting. She notified the commission members and the media within the time frame required by law for an emergency meeting. She did what she did to keep the wheels of government rolling down the track. All the commissioners were there, the media and public were there, the resolution passed and will go the City Council in time for the November meeting. She obeyed the law and did her job.

City Clerk Hungate came unhinged. Although in office a year, she still has yet to produce a written policy on how the city should comply with Freedom of Information law. She hasn’t offered any policy for any of the clerk’s duties, for that matter. But she did find time to give the mayor a piece of her mind.

And, there you have it.




1 comment »

  1. Leslie Scates says:

    According to the FOIA Handbook, in the case of a special or emergency meeting, only the media must be notified. Seems to me that the Mayor has done her legal duty on this one.

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