In a surprise turn of events, a Morgan County employee became the newest Morgan City councilman. Morgan County Planning and Development Department Director William Bill Cobabe will finish out the remainder of the term for former Morgan City Councilwoman Shelly Betz. As the city council meeting began on Tuesday, Sept. 8, Mayor Ray Little informed the audience that because of a recent change in a Utah State statute, the voting was completed incorrectly at the previous meeting. Our state governs us in some interesting ways sometimes, said Little. We voted according to the old rules and instead of just doing a back door approach, we thought it was better if we came right out and admitted we did it wrong. Attorney Gary Crane went over the new law, where it was pointed out that in the event a majority vote cannot be reachedîin this case three votes for one candidateîlots must be drawn to decide the appointment. Morgan City Recorder Julie Bloxham pointed out that they could do anything from drawing a name out of a hat to literally rolling the dice. Family rallied around Danny McBride, who was originally announced as the winner. They were great sports as the council jumped through the hoops of following the law to the letter. Cobabe lightheartedly said, I love this! This is America! Votes were cast and a majority was not met. There was deliberation as to whether or not the appointment should be tabled because of the absence of Councilman Jeff Wardell. But because Wardell had previously recused his vote stating that McBride was family, it was decided the show must go on. We have two great candidates here. We will be in good hands with either, so lets not keep them waiting any longer, said Councilman Mike Kendell. So the names went into a hat…or in this case, a paper bowl. After Bloxham made it abundantly clear that she did not want the responsibility of drawing the name, the bowl made its way back to Mayor Little, who drew out the fateful slip of paper. Attorney Crane read William. There was obvious disappointment as well as excitement in the room. But knowing the decision was made according to what state law dictates, everyone left in good spirits with handshakes and congratulations. Lets get this taken care of before you change your minds again, joked newly appointed Councilman Cobabe, who was sworn in immediately and participated as a full-fledged member of the council for the rest of the meeting. Making his first second to a motion not 10 minutes later, he was clearly ready to get to work. As both candidates were well-qualified, it is fortunate that McBride will still be on the ballot in November, as he had already applied to be on the ballot along with Fran Hopkin, whose term expires after this election. Four of the five current city council members started out their tenure on the council by first being appointed, including Cobabe, Hopkin, Kendell and Wardell. Little was appointed mayor as well. However, Cobabe was the first of them to be appointed by drawing lots.
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