The Aurora city council welcomed two new members Tuesday following last week's election. David "Larry" Marks and Stephen Wiles were sworn in at the meeting, taking the places of Linda Barton and Rosemary Henderson. With the new members sworn in, the council voted to reelect Rick Boyer to the position of mayor and nominated Marks to the post of mayor pro tem.
In addition to those appointments, the council voted on several board liaison positions, including:Planning and zoning commission -- Boyer will continue to serve Southwest Solid Waste Management district and executive boards -- city manager Mike Randall will continue to serve; Wiles will serve as the alternate Airport board -- Dawn Oplinger Park board -- Steve Ramirez Hospital board -- Oplinger Bright Futures board of trustees -- Oplinger
Once the council moved forward with its regular meeting, three citizens came forward during the public comment portion. One man was seeking answers regarding the council's recent vote to move forward with a bond issue election in August. Randall answered questions and announced his plans to visit civic organizations to explain further and hold town hall meetings for the same purpose.
In other public comment, chamber of commerce executive director Shannon Walker gave details on the plans for the eighth year of the Light the Night event. Additionally, business owner Jim Doty came forward to express his disappointment with the job Boyer has done on the council.
Moving on the council forum, Ramirez explained that he has been hearing concerns over the odor which occasionally comes from the AFB International plant. He asked whether the city can do something to reduce it or whether citizens need to contact the Department of Natural Resources.
Randall responded that the city is in contact with the business and there are procedures in place to help with the problem. Oplinger also spoke up, reminding Ramirez that she is an employee of AFB and handles the odor complaints. She told Ramirez to have his constituents call her at work with future concerns.
With no old business on the agenda, the council's first order of new business was to read a proclamation recognizing Aurora eighth grader Joshelle Hargus as the Prudential Spirit of Community Award winner. Hargus is the creator of "Joshelle's Funky Flip Flops," and has made more than 500 pairs of flip flops since 2008. Her sales proceeds go towards buying shoes and clothes for children in need.
The council then voted to approve membership to the planning and zoning commission to David White. An item to appoint park board membership to Devin White was then tabled until the council can review whether or not an out-of-town member can be appointed, as White is a resident of Verona.
In other new business, the council approved two readings of a bill making required amendments to the code of ordinances in order to moved forward with a tax increment financing district and a commission to preside over said district.
The last item of business saw the council voting to approve the purchase of a 2017 Police Interceptor by the police department, which had been budgeted for the year.
The council's next regularly scheduled meeting will take place at 6:30 p.m., April 25, at city hall.