Letter: City clerk residency
To the editor:
It appears our mayor is going to ask elected council members to support him on June 11. I hope our council declines his guidance/persuasion. I hope the council will support law and voice of their voters. In order to make an informed decision, would each of the council members review the statutes before voting on the city clerk issue?
The mayor is trying to persuade you, (the council and the public) to believe that Bard's appointment as city clerk for another year makes it legal. It is not!! Franiuk and Bard took an oath of office. It began, "You do solemnly swear," etc.
And ended with, "So help you God." One of the things they swore was to uphold the Constitution of the state of Kansas. Charter Ordinance 12, which the voters defeated, is based on Kansas law.
Now our mayor is recommending that our council support him in breaking Kansas law. Statute 54-105, states, "All oaths subject the party who shall falsify them to the pains and penalties of perjury." Charter Ordinances allow cities to exempt themselves from certain laws. In 1984 Tonganoxie passed Charter Ordinance 6 which states that, "The city clerk shall be a qualified elector of Leavenworth County Kansas." It further states, "The removal from such city or county of any officer elected or appointed under this Act, who is required to be qualified elector there of shall occasion a vacancy in such offices." At this juncture I would invite the mayor and council members to read Statute 15-301 which states, "The mayor shall be active and vigilant in enforcing all laws and ordinances for the government of the city, and he or she shall cause all subordinate officers to be dealt with promptly for and neglect or violation of duty."
I believe the law speaks loud and clear and says Franiuk is about to make a mistake. Will our council do the right thing and vote against this mistake?
What has happened to our local qualified residents? It is an insult to our community to say NO ONE in Leavenworth County is qualified to be city clerk. If we are going to relax the rules and hire an unqualified individual for the position, why not hire an unqualified (but educable) person from Tonganoxie. Our school system turns out lots of very bright students each year!