By JAMES MITCHELL
Sunday Times Newspapers
TAYLOR – Nearly two months after accepting the resignation of Treasurer Wayne Avery, the City Council named Councilwoman Jacklyn Molner to the position during its regular meeting Tuesday.
“I’m very pleased that council has such faith in me,” Molner, 58, said.
She will complete Avery’s term of office ending in 2013. A 14-year veteran of city council service, Molner took the oath of office Tuesday and presented City Clerk Mary Ann Rilley with a sworn statement that she would not accept any increased or “enhanced” pension.
“I waive any and all rights to an increase,” said Molner, who abstained from voting. Her nomination was supported by Councilors Stapleton, John Delo, Suzanne Weycker and Rick Sollars. Council Chair Cheryl Burke nominated former Treasurer Fred Kemp, who pledged to do the job at a 25 percent pay cut to help the financially strapped city. Chairwoman Pro-Tem Jill Brandana supported candidate Timothy Witz.
Molner’s service as treasurer began Tuesday, and she was expected to submit a letter of resignation from council on Wednesday. An appointment to replace Molner on council is expected at the next council meeting, Sept. 6.
Rilley said the Taylor Charter holds that vacancies on the panel, “are to be filled by a majority vote of the council.” The charter does not stipulate that the position be given to whoever was the next-highest vote getter at the most recent election. In 2011, Witz received the most votes among non-winners.
That may be a factor in the decision, although Rilley said the council was not bound to make that appointment.
“They will consider anyone who comes forward similar to what they did with the treasurer,” Rilley said.
Avery’s resignation was effective June 21, and Taylor’s elected officials spent subsequent weeks and meetings hearing from interested candidates and revising the city charter with regards to pension entitlements.
On Aug. 2 the council approved an ordinance amendment to limit the ability of an elected official to enhance a pension package if appointed or elected to another position. Some on council were concerned with Molner’s eligibility to collect a pension based on the full-time treasurer’s salary, an enhancement of any entitlements she earned on council.
(James Mitchell can be reached at [email protected].)