One by one the Warsaw mayor, clerk-treasurer and the seven members of the City Common Council were sworn into office Monday night by city attorney Mike Valentine.
“As part of the election process, the state mandates that oaths of office are given by the end of January or the election is void. So as part of the process, the final piece of the election process, the oaths of office will be given tonight to all the elected officials,” Mayor Joe Thallemer said beforehand.
Thallemer went first, followed by Clerk-Treasurer Lynne Christiansen. The council then went in order of seniority, with Jeff Grose going first as he starts his fifth four-year term. Following him were Diane Quance, second term plus two years; Mike Klondaris, Cindy Dobbins, Jerry Frush, all starting their second terms; Ron Shoemaker, who was appointed in November to replace Charlie Smith, who died in an airplane accident in October; and finally Jack Wilhite, elected in November to replace Elaine Call who chose not to run for re-election.
The council then unanimously elected Klondaris to serve as its president as suggested by past president Quance.
“Thank you very much. I appreciate your confidence,” Klondaris said.
Thallemer told the council and the public present, “I’m very excited to get started as I know the council is for their second term. We’ve got a lot of work to do. We couldn’t get it all done in four years, and we’re obviously, at least four more. This group is going to work hard. We’ve got some strategic planning coming up, we’re going to redo the strategic plan we initiated four years ago. We’ve been on the same page, we got a lot done and I want to continue in that direction.”
He acknowledged his wife, Jill, for her patience.
“I couldn’t have endured the challenges without you,” he told her.
Dobbins gave a report on the pop-up shops that the Warsaw Community Development Corp. initiated for the downtown over the holidays.
She said they ended up with two shops, though they were hoping for more. One of the shops, Elysian, is going to be staying downtown.
“Both shops did well, but I believe one of the shops actually has a business within their home so they elected to go back there,” Dobbins said.
Because the shops were so well received, Dobbins said the WCDC is talking about having more pop-up shops this summer while the Seward Johnson statues are back in town.
Hopefully, she said, with the bit of success a shop had this last time, it will encourage people to let their building be used for pop-up shops to gain a tenant down the road.
Elysian is now located at the former Meridian Title building on Center Street, Dobbins said.
Thallemer said it’s the second year for the program.
The council also unanimously approved a resolution transferring $150,000 from the general fund to the general bond. Christiansen said the council has approved the resolution for the temporary loan every year since it’s had the general bond in 2008.
“The payment’s due in February, and the (Department of Local Government Finance) only lets you have so much reserves. So after we make a loan and pay it back at the end of the year, then we don’t have enough money to make that first payment in February, so this will hold us over until the first payment in February and then we get our first distribution in June, and then we still have to use a little bit of that then, and we’ll pay it back at the end of the year,” she said.
Thallemer said it just goes with the timing of the bond issuance and the receipt of the revenues.
Before wrapping the meeting up, Thallemer and the council scheduled a public meeting to discuss the strategic plan. It was set for 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Jan. 13 in the city council chambers.
Thallemer also noted the second city council meeting of the month was moved from Jan. 18 to Jan. 19 because of the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday that week. It also will be at 5 p.m. instead of 7 p.m.
(Story By The Times Union)