Crawford mayor, trustees sworn in
By Eric Goold
Published Wednesday, April 27, 2016 9:02 am
Photo by Eric Goold Trustees (left to right) Chriss Watters, Hetty Todd, Tammy Broughton and John Patton are sworn into office.
After an election that couldn't have been any closer, the Town of Crawford swore in its new trustees and mayor April 20 at Crawford Town Hall.
Wanda Gofforth defeated Gill Saunders by one vote, 61-60, and won the mayor's seat.
Four trustees were sworn in as well when John Patton, Tammy Broughton, Hetty Todd and Chriss Watters all took their seats on the council.
While the numbers might indicate a divided electorate, Gofforth thinks the new council will work collectively with one voice and will have the same goals.
"The council here, we've had our differences, but we're able to talk about it and come to a conclusion and nobody gets carried away," said Gofforth. "And with the new ones we have we're going to have a very strong council and hopefully we'll all work together and we'll hope that the civility is there."
Outgoing Mayor Susie Steckel could have run for another term but chose not to.
"I said in the beginning I was going to do one term and that's all. And I kept my word," Steckel said. "I'm really happy about the people who got onto the council. I'm friends with all of them and I'm really pleased with the council. I think that they'll probably carry through with what we started in my term."
Gofforth, Patton and Broughton were elected to four-year terms.
The third and fourth trustees in the election, Todd and Watters, were tied in the vote count. There was no way to decide which would serve the four-year term and which would serve a two-year term, so their names were put in a hat and Steckel drew one out.
Todd's name was picked so she'll have the four-year term and Watters will be up for re-election in two years.
The random selection method was not unprecedented. Both Steckel and Gofforth recalled a mayoral election some 25 years ago that was tied and decided by a coin toss.
"How often do you have a tie? This is the first time in at least 10 years that anything like this has happened," Gofforth said. "It was a special circumstance."
Gofforth handed out assignments to the new board members. Broughton will serve on the Delta Housing Authority while Patton will work in the Juvenile Diversion program. Watters will be the representative to the Crawford Area Chamber of Commerce and Todd will continue her work on the Planning Commission.
Trustee Cameron Clark will continue to work on parks and trustee Mike Tiedeman will work on streets and also will serve as mayor pro tem.
"I think the biggest challenge is going to be keeping the money coming in and keep up with the lack of money coming in," Gofforth said. "With the mines going out, that's going to be our biggest challenge, to stay within budget."
In other business, the town reviewed bids for the sewer main replacement on Cedar Avenue. The contract was awarded to Tribble and Sons at a cost of $5,575, the lowest of the four bids.
Public works director Bruce Bair announced that the Town of Crawford will be sponsoring its annual trash clean-up days from May 16-18 (Monday through Wednesday). During these days the town will be collecting and hauling trash to the landfill.
Items that will not be accepted include household garbage, chemicals or hazardous waste, appliances containing Freon and electronic equipment (televisions, computers, etc.).
Also, with the arrival of spring and warmer weather, Bair reminded everyone of the town's weed ordinance stating that owners/occupants are responsible for clearing all undesirable plants that grow to a height of 12 inches or more.
Failure to comply results in a warning letter and a two week grace period before public works employees will remove the weeds at a charge of $75 per hour.