City of Volente

Volente council elects new mayor

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After months of controversy, the City of Volente has a new mayor.

During a special called meeting on July 2, Village of Volente City Council appointed candidate Jana Nace as mayor following the June 6 resignation of former Mayor David Springer.

“I think it’s important for our community not to dwell on past procedures,” said Nace following the meeting, “but instead to focus on what moves our village forward while maintaining the original vision that we have for Volente.”

With a full dais, council member Bill Connors was the lone vote for resident Steve Baker, the second mayoral candidate.

Connors had asked the city to consider either waiting until later July to vote on a new mayor so residents could weigh in on their candidate choice or calling for the vote in an election this November.

Mayor Pro Tem Chris Wilder said Springer had asked to not be a “holdover” official. State law requires that a resigned official must hold over in his or her official capacity until the position is filled. Other council members agreed to pursue the evening’s agenda.

Judy Barrick, chairperson of the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission, was approved to take Nace’s newly-vacant council spot.  Connors voted against the appointment.

Both Nace and Barrick were sworn into office at the meeting and will hold their positions until the November 2020 election, continuing with the term that Springer and Nace, as a council member, held.

Nace referred to recent turmoil. The council has not met regularly since mid-January, the city secretary has resigned and a temporary secretary, Nanette Akinleye, is now in place. Wilder had filled in for Springer for months before his June resignation.

She said the financial records “need to be taken out of the hands of the volunteer citizens that are elected,” and pushed for Volente committees to be revitalized, encouraging citizen involvement in civic actions.

“I don’t think it is in the best interest of this village to continue all of the controversy regarding how the city financial practices are managed,” she said. “I believe it is important to be objective, unbiased and legally in compliance with state laws.”

Nace said her focus for the upcoming administration includes efficiency, continuity and integrity. She said Volente needs to use its resources to better its management, organizational skills and communication with citizens. Nace advocated a new plan to maintain the village’s financial records, an issue when a different council member serves as the record keeper every two years.

She said the financial records “need to be taken out of the hands of the volunteer citizens that are elected” and pushed for Volente committees to be revitalized, encouraging citizen involvement in civic actions.

“I don’t think it is in the best interest of this village to continue all of the controversy regarding how the city financial practices are managed,” Nace said. “I believe it is important to be objective, unbiased and legally in compliance with state laws.”

She advocated accountability for council members, with the dais acting responsibly and honoring commitments “to ensure what happened six months ago never happens again.”

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