For the third month in a row, Goldendale has lost a city council member. Shannon Middleton resigned in April, Julie Buck moved away in May and Kevin Feiock announced his reluctant resignation Monday night. He said he had been out of the state for several months “for domestic reasons” and realized that he could not continue as councilor under state law. In an unusual twist, he had filed for re-election in May and it is too late to remove his name from the ballot. He was running unopposed, so will undoubtedly win that election. And he may indeed rejoin the council after the election. This is the way he put it last night:
“I did not want to do this. I have to follow the RCW. I have to follow the law. This was not something I wanted to do and I still hope to come back to the city. To my city.”
City administrator Larry Bellamy outlined the situation, noting that state law requires that in the event of a resignation, the remaining members of the council have 90 days to appoint a replacement. The usual process is to notice that the city is accepting letters of application from people who would like to be appointed, conduct interviews of those who submit letters then vote to choose one of the applicants. But Bellamy noted that both the number six and number seven positions held by Middleton and Buck, respectively, had been noticed twice in the Goldendale Sentinel and no applications have been received.
He also pointed out that in the election filings last month that Elie Casey had filed for Position Six and was running unopposed, that Steve Johnston had filed for Position Seven and was running unopposed, and that Ashley Cooper had filed for Position 4 to run against Miland Waling. After much discussion, councilors decided at the next meeting to appoint those three to fill the empty chairs, since they had shown the only interest from the public.
In other news Police Chief Jay Hunziker announced that the Goldendale Police Department had joined with other law enforcement groups in Klickitat County to purchase a special drug incinerator. This, he said, would save having to haul the items all the way to Spokane for incineration.