Archive for Wednesday, November 28, 2001

Letter to the editor

A question for the council

November 28, 2001

A question for the council

To the editor:

Of the many questionable things our city government has done, one of the more recent is allowing Kathy Bard to be involved the process of selecting our new city administrator.

Sixty percent of those who voted on the charter ordinance to "change the city clerk residency requirement" said they wanted our city clerk to be a resident of Leavenworth County. Ms. Bard did not meet the requirement when hired, nor does she meet it now. The May 22nd vote should have resulted in Ms. Bard's removal as city employee according to statute. At city attorney Crow's direction and public challenge, our city officers named Karen Daniels as city clerk and appointed Ms. Bard as "assistant city administrator." Her job now is "to do whatever Chris Clark (ex-city administrator) directs her to do."

K.S.A. 15.204 and 15.209 does allow municipalities to appoint "officers as deemed necessary," with "duties and pay regulated by ordinance." The law further states that appointments shall be qualified electors of the city.

This same statute gives the council power to remove the city attorney, city clerk and other appointed officers.

The problem has never been with Ms. Bard or her qualifications (she has completed clerk school since becoming an employee of the city of Tonganoxie). The problem is with the city's lack of respect for standing ordinances and respect for the wishes of the public. When city action is questioned, our inquiries are considered personal attacks carried on because of personal vendettas. Looks like the ball is now in our council's court will they do the right thing?

(An interesting and important observation: Ms. Bard's salary is equivalent to the increased cost of health insurance now being charged to all city employees.)

Roger Shilling,


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