Bivans elected vice mayor; members sworn into office

marquisHARRINGTON — The new vice mayor of Harrington was chosen after two Council members were sworn in for new terms and a quick ten minute City Council organizational meeting on Mon. June 1.

Duane E. Bivans jokingly said he hopes “that the mayor doesn’t quit” while he holds his new position within the Council. Nominated by fellow Council member Amy Minner, he was elected with five favorable votes. Council member Fonda Coleman was absent.

“It feels humbling,” he said after the meeting. “I have to let my heart stop racing. This is surreal.”

The State of the City Address was given during the meeting, as well, as read by City Manager Terry Tieman and written by Mayor Anthony Moyer who was present, but noticeably unable to read through his speech without coughing.

“It is my sincere belief that the City is in the strongest position it has been in in a very long time,” Ms. Tieman read.

The speech mentioned a balanced budget for fiscal year 2016, noting savings to both the citizens and the City after repairing parts of the sewer system and changing the way water is billed.

minnerOver the past year, Mr. Moyer said in the report, repairs were made to the City museum, the Parks and Recreation building was renovated and a permanent movie screen was placed in Freedom Park.

Moving forward, he cited in progress and upcoming projects such as the zoning code rewrite, new construction and development, considerations of a new library location and building and a new ‘business going in at Spartan Station that will employ 30 people and is actively taking job applications.’

Mr. Moyer said he will ask the City Council to address committee issues, look at expansion struggles and term limits, an issue he has been vocal about since prior to his election.

Although Mr. Bivans agrees with Mayor Anthony Moyer’s position on term limits, no one in city government roles have term limits attached to their seats.

“I think term limits can be good because it opens up channels for other people who are concerned about the growth of their City and the direction it’s going in,” Vice Mayor Bivans said. “It gives folks the opportunity to have a voice inside of the circle.”

Newcomer Eric Marquis and returning member Ms. Minner were both sworn in during a ceremony before the organizational meeting. Ms. Minner ran uncontested for district two while Mr. Marquis was elected for district four after running against former vice mayor and 16-year Council member Cheryl Lahman.

Family members and friends gathered for the quick ceremony which included a prayer offered by Pastor Ken Figgs of Calvary Wesleyan Church and refreshments.

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