Four Marion reps on MCEDC submit letters of resignation

Four city of Marion appointees to the Marion County Economic Development Council resigned, prompting discussion by the city council at its Monday meeting.

Todd Heitschmidt, Margo Yates, Jackie Crofoot and Don Noller submitted letters of resignation on Wednesday, June 17, to the city council.

?What seems to be the problem?? asked Councilor Gene Winkler. ?Evidently, there?s a big one.?

Mayor Mary Olson said it was her understanding that the city representatives didn?t think they could work things out with the economic director.

Yates stated in her letter that she was no longer devoted to the organization.

She wrote that she was saddened by recent decisions and actions, which in her opinion further divided the communities in Marion County?reinforcing her belief that her voice was no longer being heard.

Crofoot wrote that she was resigning because she no longer could support a group that does not have the confidence of looking out for the betterment of Marion and Marion County.

Recent actions and decisions, she wrote, have made her realize her time could be better spent elsewhere.

Don Noller stated he wanted to thank the city of Marion for allowing him the opportunity to be part of the MCEDC. He added that he wanted to continue helping with economic growth in the county.

Heitschmidt, who served as the MCEDC treasurer and advertising committee chair, resigned because of other commitments.

He cited his recent appointment by the Secretary of the Kansas Department of Com?merce to the NetWork Kansas board of directors as one of the major reasons for leaving the economic development board.

Winkler said he was under the impression the county commissioners didn?t have much to do with the MCEDC.

Olson said that since the commissioners budget of $8,000 to the MCEDC and $2,000 of that to Leadership Marion County, they want to be informed and play an active part.

Olson also asked to be an acting spokeswoman for the MCEDC since four of its representatives had resigned. The position would not be an appointment, but the council, by concensus, approved the mayor being involved.

A meeting is scheduled Thursday, July 9, inviting all mayors in Marion County, the county commissioners, Teresa Huffman, executive director of MCEDC, and other representatives.

In addition to that agenda, the council held a public hearing regarding special assessments for the 800 block of Roosevelt Street. The total cost for a street, along with curb and guttering would be $87,000.

Those residents affected and amount of individual assessments include Kurt and Linda Spachek, $8,283; Gerald and Heather Vinduska, $6,626; Terrance and Cynthia Vinduska, $8,283; Melissa Stubenhofer, $6,626; Lee and Linda Dalrymple (two locations), $16,722; Roger Schwab, $9,024; Jay and Cheryl Christensen, $6,119; Josh and Clark Whitwell, $8,591; Joshua and Shannon Cooper, $8,361 and Chad and Rebecca Gormley, $8,361.

Residents will have the option of paying the special assessment in full or over a 10-year period.

Following the public hearing, Rose Mary Saunders of Ranson Financial said the next step would be advertising the sale of bonds until July 13.

By Aug. 1, the pay-in period would end for those residents wanting to avoid interest tacked on to the assessment.

The bond sale would be held Aug. 10 and by Aug. 20, the $87,000 will be deposited into the city?s account.

The contractor, Dave Hett, said he would begin work sometime in August.

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