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Grand Island Mayor Vavricek speaks
Troubles inside the walls of Grand Island City Hall continue to escalate from confusion about the fire chief position to the resignation of the City Administrator. It remains a political mystery.
But for the first time in a one-on-one exclusive interview with News 5's Dara Newson Mayor Jay Vavricek answers questions about all the confusion and frustration that has plagued City Hall.
The Mayor touched on a number of controversies and spoke about the latest developments of City Administrator Mary Lou Brown's resignation turn-around.
The first question to him was to clarify what has lead to this entire dramatic ordeal.
"Particularly the city administrator, no question, didn't anticipate that in June or July, but it happened so we now have to deal with it," said Vavricek.
News 5: Who exerted the pressure for you to go ahead and ask for her resignation?
"Well when you talk about external factors and political outcries, I think, it is very apparent in June many people were basing decisions that they read in the newspaper. They were also involved in collective bargaining also involved in external factors outside of the work place."
When Vavricek initially announced City Administrator Mary Lou Brown's resignation, the picture painted made her the culprit for much of the political division at City Hall.
"I think it's unfair to go ahead and label one person for a number of contributing factors outside the workplace. When I was affected by those political sentiments I should have not allowed that to affect my judgment. I think you need to ask each city council member. I've not had one specific issue, not show up on time, not work hard, have the ability to have a budget what's the issue."
Some council members have blamed the Mayor for his inconsistent communication.
"City council has a roll, a mayor has a role. Mayor has authority of the city code and it's an executive order. I'm always welcome for input. I'd like input on suggestions going forward as opposed to arm chair quarter thoughts as to what occurred in the past."
As for the back to back string of announcements on Friday afternoon:
"That information that I could see last week that was impacting an employment decisions of candidates for fire chief as pretty much evident. No need to go ahead and go through the same rigamarole of city administrator when I don't know if I'm going to be employed in the next two months."
The mayor also said Mary Lou Brown is recovering from her unexpected weekend surgery.
The council will vote on the appointment of the fire chief position tonight at their city council meeting.
Also, the recall petition that was out on hold for a couple days will resume Saturday at 10:30 am.
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