Jeff Gadman’s tenure as a Lacey City councilman ended Thursday night with a precouncil meeting reception, kind comments shared during the meeting and presentation of the gavel for him to adjourn the gathering.
Gadman, imitating Mayor Andy Ryder’s signature send-off, closed the meeting by saying, “Keep it classy, Lacey.”
“I want to thank the public out there for voting twice to keep me in this chair, and I hope I represented you to the best of your expectations,” he said. “It has been one heck of a ride, although I’m really looking forward to the new opportunity I’ve been given as Thurston County treasurer.”
Gadman was appointed to that position by the Thurston County Board of Commissioners last month to fill the vacancy created by Shawn Myers. Myers is now assistant state treasurer.
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Gadman served six years on the council. Despite council member differences, the respect they had for each other allowed the body to function, he said.
“I can’t think of a better group to be part of,” Gadman said.
Councilman Michael Steadman said it was a pleasure to work with him.
Now, the council has to decide how to fill the position in the short term. The group is expected to discuss the process at its next work session on March 16.
Lacey residents Ken Balsley and Richard Bokofsky say they plan to apply for the vacancy and run for a seat on the council. Another Lacey resident, Cindy Sharpe, says she is considering whether to apply. A fourth person, Matthew Staples, was set to apply and run for a council seat, but he found that he lives outside city limits.
The eventual appointment could represent a shift in voting power on the council. To date, there have been two distinct voting blocs on the council: Mayor Ryder, Deputy Mayor Cynthia Pratt, Gadman and Steadman tended to vote together, while Lenny Greenstein, Jason Hearn and Virgil Clarkson formed the second bloc.
That 4-3 split carried the day on the city’s plastic bag ban, preventing it from being put to a vote of Lacey residents.