An overflow crowd at City Hall watched Scott Mann take the oath of office as Menifee's first elected mayor Tuesday night during the Menifee City Council meeting.
|Supervisor Jeff Stone administers the oath of office to new|
mayor Scott Mann, with Pastor Chris Suitt holding the Bible.
Mann defeated council member Darcy Kuenzi Nov. 6 in the first election in which the public, not seated council members, selected the mayor. Mann, one of the original city council members and most recently a board member of the Menifee Union School District, was sworn in by County Supervisor Jeff Stone.
Greg August, who unseated incumbent Sue Kristjansson in District 1, was also sworn in, along with Wallace Edgerton, who defeated Planning Commissioner Bill Zimmerman to retain his council seat.
"The election is over, the dust has settled, and it's time to get to work," Mann told the audience after taking the mayor's seat previously occupied by John Denver, who remains on the council, along with Tom Fuhrman.
Mann presided over a short agenda following presentations to outgoing council members Kuenzi and Kristjansson. He presented as an agenda request for the next council meeting a list of 10 policy items for consideration, including a revised decorum policy; transparency initiatives; and the establishment of a parks and recreation commission.
|City Clerk Kathy Bennett administers the oath of office|
to council members Wallace Edgerton and Greg August.
Mann also selected for appointment to the Planning Commission Lesa Sobek, a longtime Menifee resident who has been instrumental in many community activities. He also called a special meeting for Wednesday, Dec. 12 at 5 p.m. to address some issues that must be decided this month. Previously, no further council meetings were scheduled for December.
The new council concluded the evening by meeting in closed session for an employee evaluation of city attorney Joseph Fletcher. When the meeting ended 45 minutes later, Mann said no action was proposed regarding Fletcher's job status.
Kuenzi and Kristjansson received presentations from several groups and individuals in recognition of their service. In a tearful goodbye to Kuenzi, Denver said, "the City of Menifee is really a product of this lady," giving her much of the credit in pursuing Menifee's incorporation in 2008.
"It's not goodbye," Kuenzi said. "I still live here and I will continue my community service. Congratulations to the incoming council members. I wish you well and hope you will continue to help Menifee move forward."
|Dawn Prather of Arts Council Menifee makes a presentation to|
John Denver, Sue Kristjansson and Darcy Kuenzi.
Prior to giving an invocation that followed the installation of the new council members, Pastor Chris Suitt of New Hope Community Church congratulated the new council members and urged audience members to be supportive, not critical, of their elected officials.
"The 'I want, I want' must stop. Guess what? This is America. If you don't like an elected official, vote them out. But don't attack them," said Suitt, who earlier thanked Kuenzi and Kristjansson for their service "despite taking a lot of flak."
Public discord expressed during previous council meetings are well documented, but there were nothing but pleasantries expressed Tuesday night.
Edgerton acknowledged this in his closing comments.
"I'm sure the press has picked up on this, as they have in the past regarding behavior at council meetings," Edgerton said. "Every single comment made here tonight was positive. I look forward to seeing that in the headlines."