Deputy Mayor Mark Renaud and Councillor Marty Klein have both filed papers to run for the mayor’s chair in this fall’s municipal election.
But neither will be seeking the interim position during a special meeting of council this Friday (May 2) morning at 8:30 a.m. on that very subject.
“I think it’s a fairness issue,” stated Councillor Klein during Monday’s open meeting.
Deputy Mayor Renaud also indicated he would not seek the position for the same reason, and if nominated, “I will decline the nomination.”
Both members of council however, indicated their belief the position should be filled from within council.
Selecting an interim mayor was necessitated by Mayor John Lessif’s decision to resign his position at the end of April. The timing precludes a by-election but requires an interim replacement.
Deputy Mayor Renaud brought forward a notice of motion for a meeting to do so Friday morning, a motion seconded by Councillor Klein.
Councillor Mel Getty indicated he would support the motion, as long as it was ‘a good time,’ when council members would be available.
“We’ll make ourselves available,” interjected Councillor Dave Beres, who also indicated appreciation for Renaud and Klein’s position on the matter.
The timing does not dovetail well for Councillor Chris Rosehart’s business responsibilities. She questioned whether it could instead be scheduled during evening hours?
“Does it have to be in the morning?”
Mayor Lessif questioned whether 6 p.m. Friday evening would be convenient? Councillor Brian Stephenson was not in favour of the suggestion.
“OK Mr. Mayor,” Councillor Rosehart responded. “I’ll be here in my pajamas.”
Deputy Mayor Renaud indicated his willingness to change the time and date of the meeting in his motion, inquiring whether Thursday, May 1 at 6 p.m. would be better for Councillor Rosehart?, a query reiterated by Mayor Lessif.
“I’m outvoted Mr. Mayor,” Rosehart responded. “I’ll have to comply with the wishes of the men.”
Mayor Lessif did point out the deputy mayor had indicated willingness to change the time and date, a statement that didn’t appear to completely mollify Councillor Rosehart, who also took the opportunity to declare her feelings on candidate selection.
“I personally do not wish to see anybody on council be interim mayor.”
A motion for the special meeting to select an interim mayor Friday, May 2 at 8:30 a.m. subsequently passed.
Councillor Brian Stephenson reminded the community Keep Tillsonburg Beautiful day is scheduled for this Saturday (May 3). Participants are invited to meet at 9 a.m. at the Memorial Park Pavilion adjacent to the Lake Lisgar Water Park. Volunteers will help clean up around Lake Lisgar and also plant trees along the community’s trail system.
“They can use all the help they can get and kids are welcome,” Stephenson concluded.
Director of Operations Steve Lund reminded Tillsonburg’s citizens of hydro power outages required for maintenance on Hydro I networks that will affect Tillsonburg Hydro Inc. customers. Weather permitting, power will be off in the community Sunday, May 4 from 3 a.m. to 8 a.m. and again Sunday, May 25 from 3 a.m. to 8 a.m. These dates and times can be cancelled or rescheduled right up to the day of, said Lund.
“Tillsonburg Hydro appreciates the understanding of the public as we get the necessary upgrades,” said Lund.