At the conclusion of his final meeting as a member of the Delta City Council, Bill Raley said it's time for the younger residents of the city to step into leadership roles. Those two young leaders are apparently city council candidates Nathan Clay and Kevin Carlson. Clay had no opposition in the April 3 municipal election; Carlson narrowly edged out Jay Stooksberry by 22 votes. Tallies are not yet official; there are a handful of outstanding ballots awaiting signature cures, and military and overseas electors have until April 13 to return their ballots.
By a wider margin, voters approved taxation of retail marijuana and unprocessed marijuana products, if the sales of those products are ever legalized in city limits. The margin on both measures was roughly 61 percent in favor, 39 percent against.
City clerk Jolene Nelson said voter turnout was about 31.5 percent, which is average for municipal elections.
Bill Raley was a member of the Delta Planning Commission for six years before appointment to Delta City Council in 2011, upon the death of Bill Seuell. He won re-election to the council twice. "I can say I enjoyed almost every minute of it," he said. "We didn't always agree on everything, but we always had the City of Delta's interests at heart." He encouraged the new council to take the same approach.
Ed Sisson has also been on Delta City Council for eight years, including six as mayor.
"Have I made a difference? I hope so," he said.
One of his greatest joys was reading proclamations, and on April 3 he had an opportunity to read two -- one for Altrusa Founder's Day on April 11 and the other recognizing National Crime Victims' Rights Week April 8-14.
"I have served with some very forward-thinking individuals," he said at the conclusion of the city council meeting. "Serving with four other individuals can be at times very taxing. During many hours of meetings, we have learned to agree to disagree. In the end we try to make decisions that will benefit this fine city."
Sisson said he served with three city managers -- Joe Kirby, Justin Clifton and David Torgler. In between, community development director Glen Black filled in.
"David Torgler being hired was one of the best decisions we made during my tenure. He has been and will continue to be a breath of fresh air to our wonderful community."
Sisson was complimentary of other city staff members, as well.
He encouraged all council members to take advantage of training offered through the Colorado Municipal League. He urged Ron Austin, Gerald Roberts, Chris Ryan, Nathan Clay and Kevin Carlson to realize they are all on the same team.
A collaborative effort between the Delta County Sheriff's Office and municipal law enforcement agencies throughout Delta County has resulted in a proposal for a 1 percent sales tax increase to fund public safety. A PowerPoint presentation titled "Back the Badge" is starting to make the rounds at city/town council meetings, service club luncheons and other events.