CITY OF FORT SCOTT
SPECIAL CITY COMMISSION MEETING
Minutes of November 19, 2020 Special Meeting #15
A special meeting of the Fort Scott City Commission was held November 19th, 2020 at 10:00 a.m. in the City Commission Meeting Room, 123 S. Main Street, Fort Scott, Kansas.
Commissioners Kevin Allen, Pete Allen, and Lindsey Watts were present with President of the Commission, Randy Nichols, presiding.
AUDIENCE IN ATTENDANCE: Travis Shelton, Ally Turvey, Janice Allen, Jason Pickert, Russell Lingerfelt, Rachel Pruitt, and Anne Rawlins. Jeff Deane, City Attorney, appeared via Zoom.
Accept resignation of JoLynne Mitchell
President of the Commission, Nichols, said that on behalf of the community, he wished to thank her for her dedication and service to this community. We should be grateful for her service to the City.
K. Allen moved to accept the resignation of JoLynne Mitchell. L. Watts seconded. All voted aye.
APPROVED TO ACCEPT THE RESIGNATION OF JOLYNNE MITCHELL.
K. Allen also said that he wished to thank JoLynne for her dedication and service to this community.
Discussion on process to fill the open position
R. Nichols said that our current ordinance gives us 10 days to act on the replacement on this position or at the next regularly scheduled City Commission meeting after the occurrence of the vacancy. In the past, it appeared either a nomination was readily available or letters of interest were taken for this open position.
Jeff Hancock, Interim City Manager, said that the Commission needs to decide to advertise and accept letters of interest and vote at the next meeting. If they decide to do this, you may need to consider moving your next meeting up to 2:00 p.m. or 3:00 p.m.
P. Allen said that the next regularly scheduled meeting is outside of the 10 days.
Jeff Deane said that the ordinance does state 10 days. You can decide on a different amount of time. This ordinance was passed in 2005.
K. Allen said that when he was City Commissioner years ago, Bill Brittain was elected to the County Commission. He ended up resigning as City Commissioner to take that position. Kevin invited Barbara Wood to take his position. She decided to and fulfilled his position. That is why he proposed the Charter Ordinance to offer the position to the next person who was in line from the election results.
L. Watts said that Charter Ordinance was not passed by the Commission.
K. Allen said that he felt it was the right thing to do. He said that the next person in line from the last election was Deb McCoy.
R. Nichols said that he felt opposite of his opinion. This is not the proper way to fill this position. She was not elected by the people and this is not the will of the people.
L. Watts said that she also disagreed with this. By taking letters of interest, it gives the opportunity to anyone in the City limits to apply for this position. This does not take away anyone’s opportunity to apply.
K. Allen made a motion to ask Deb McCoy to fill this open position. P. Allen seconded. K. Allen and P. Allen voted aye. L. Watts and R. Nichols voted no. No further votes were called or cast, and the motion failed 2-2.
K. Allen asked what to do in a tie situation.
Jeff Deane said that the City Attorney is the deciding factor. He said that he will encourage the Commission to force someone who is acceptable to at least three of them. He hopes that at least three if not four, will find someone acceptable for this position. He does not want his hand forced to have to break a tie.
P. Allen said that is what he expected – a 2-2 vote. He would like the City Commission to take Jeff Deane’s advice and work together to find a person that three out of four of them can live with. All of them have different opinions. The Commission has to select a person that at least three of them can agree on. He recommended changing the date to December 1st. Leaving their decision to a 2-2 vote is not fair to the Commission, the City Attorney, or to the citizens. Pete said that each of them can even list names of people they want to recommend for this position.
L. Watts said that each of them should reach out to individuals as well as accepting letters of interest. She also stated that she does not think that by voting no, that Deb McCoy should not submit a letter of interest and she should if this is something that she wants.
Discussion was held on dates that a meeting could be held to review letters of interest and submitted names, as well as select a person and instantly expect them to attend a meeting that same evening.
L. Watts moved to approve to accept letters of interest to be received by 12:00 p.m. on November 30th, 2020. Also, submitted names by the City Commissioners for the open position that they recommend will be reviewed. It was also moved to meet on Monday, November 30th, 2020 at 6:15 p.m. to go over the submitted names. P. Allen seconded. P. Allen, L. Watts, and R. Nichols voted aye. K. Allen voted no. Motion carried 3-1.
approved to accept letters of interest to be received by 12:00 p.m. on November 30th, 2020. Also, submitted names by the City Commissioners for the open position that they recommend will be reviewed. It was also moved to meet on Monday, November 30th, 2020, at 6:15 p.m. to go over the submitted names.
L. Watts moved to adjourn the meeting at 10:40 a.m. P. Allen seconded. All voted aye.
ADJOURNED MEETING AT 10:40 A.M.
Diane K. Clay, M.M.C.