By Joe Bachman
WISCONSIN RAPIDS — City officials need more time to discuss the decision to extend the mayoral term from two years to four years.
This would have gone into effect for the spring 2018 elections, and affects the city clerk, attorney and municipal judge, who will also hold four-year terms. Alderperson Scott Kellogg spoke in favor of the motion, but made a point that a four-year term is too long, and instead suggested a three-year term.
“Once you get a mayor in office, just to get traction, the two years in office you can’t really do very much.” said Kellogg. “I think the mayor has done a good job.”
However, according to Alderperson Thad Kubisiak, the move shouldn’t represent any kind of performance measure for the current mayor, and further discussion is necessary.
“This vote should not be a litmus test on how the current mayor is doing,” said Kubisiak. “That already happens every other spring.”
Alderperson Joe Zurfluh made the ultimate motion that the item should be tabled and discussed soon at a future committee of the whole meeting — which the Mayor, when faced with a tiebreaker for the initial vote to set the mayoral term to three years, concurred, and hence declined to break the tie, sending it to a vote in its original form.
“I’m very sensitive to comments made, and it’s tough for me as the incumbent to continue to have this issue brought out because it sometimes could be viewed as a litmus test,” said Mayor Zach Vruwink. “I do suggest that a committee of the whole have a discussion and I personally not attend. I think it’s important for the council to settle this issue.”
Council members voted unanimously to hold a special committee of the whole meeting on the issue at a future date.