BOSCOBEL - Boscobel’s Common Council elected a new leader.
Brian Kendall, Alder for Ward 4, will replace Barb Bell (Ward 1), who announced at the council’s April 18 meeting that she will not seek re-election.
Bell was initially nominated and seconded for the position, but she interrupted proceedings to turn it down.
“I really appreciate it, but I decline. This is my last year. Someone else should take it over,” she said.
Kendall was then nominated by Steve Fritz (Ward 2) and seconded by Roger Brown (Ward 4). Kendall at first demurred, “Oh boy. I appreciate it. Thank you very much, but I just want to make sure I’m able to do a good job.”
One of the duties of the president is to sit on the Board of the Boscobel Utility, and Mike Reynolds, Boscobel City Engineer/Director of Public Works, who also sits on the board, spoke up for Kendall.
“We’d like to have you on, Brian. I think you like it. And if it does become a problem, we can always revisit.”
Alder Brown moved to close the nominations, and the board unanimously approved the election. Alders Gary Kjos (Ward 1) and Stephanie Brown (Ward 2) were not in attendance.
By phone, Kendall expressed “honor and humility” in the vote of confidence from his peers, and stressed that continuity was assured. “I don’t see any big change,” he said.
In addition to serving on the Utility Board, the Council President is second in command after the mayor and serves as “Acting Mayor” if the elected mayor is absent or unable to preside. The president, like the mayor, also wields a certain amount of authority through the “bully pulpit” of his position.
Bell, who was first elected in 2001 and has served ever since, has been Council President the past six years.
Other routine matters
Prior to the presidential vote, Kendall and two of his peers on the council were sworn in by City Administrator Patricia Smith. Kendall, Fritz, Kjos, and Milt Cashman (Ward 3) were all re-elected in unopposed races.
The mayor’s committee appointments were also approved: Kjos moved from Finance to Protection and Welfare, trading places on both committees with Roger Brown. The mayor indicated the swap was at Kjos’s request. Brown said the committees should have equal representation from each ward.
The council also designated official City Depositories: Clare, Community First, and Peoples State Bank, and the Local Government Investment Pool. The Boscobel Dial was designated the official City Newspaper.
The council also:
• Approved street closing and barricades for Krogen’s Do it Best 90th Celebration on May 13, and Pat & Greg’s Pour House Greg Bell Jr. Scholarship Fundraiser on May 19 to 21.
• Reviewed a Plan Commission approval for Rex Smith’s conditional use permit to allow the outdoor kitchen, vendors, and amplified music at his downtown Boscobel location.
• Approved a street food application for Jose’s Authentic Mexican Restaurant Food Truck.