Will Hagerstown Mayor and Council leave a seat empty on the dais?

October 25 – With the resignation of Bob Bruchey from Hagerstown’s Mayor and Council a few weeks ago, there are only four people seated on the dais. 

A number of people have been wondering if and/or when the council will fill the seat. 

An executive session will be held on November 7. 

Mayor Tekesha Martinez explained, “The council will then decide whether they’re going to leave the seat empty. I don’t feel as though they will because it’s a year and two months and we’re going into budget and with me running for Congress, and if someone gets sick, then you don’t have a quorum, and so that’s a long time to leave the seat empty. But we’ll talk about how they’ll decide who they’ll choose.”

With four people on council, if a vote comes down to a tie, the mayor is the tiebreaker. 

Councilmember Shelley McIntire was absent at last night’s regular session, which left only three council members. 

Martinez said, “That’s exactly why we just can’t leave it, especially going into budget. You don’t want to be making those decisions with three people at the table. You want to be making the decisions around the budget with a full body. It wasn’t that long ago that I think we got 18 applications. So I’m not sure if they’ll go back through those applications, if they’ll open it up again. That’s the decision that they’ll make at the executive session in two weeks.”

No one stepped up to the mic yesterday for citizen comment. 

Martinez said, “We did give three bikes away, three tablets and gift cards to kids. There was a contest that the HPD did, a gang awareness and prevention. So there were some kids in the gallery. It was really cool to see the kids.”

Some council members showed appreciation for Bruchey. 

Martinez said, “Council Member Aleshire gave us thoughts on Bob. That was kind of good because people don’t really get to hear what a person’s relationship is with someone at the table. So, Councilmember Aleshire just shared that we’ve been at each other, but we’ve always left it at the table and we remain friends.” 

Council also offered condolences for the family and co-workers of Judge Wilkinson, who was killed last week in his driveway from an angered man who lost custody of his children from a decision Judge Wilkinson made. The killer has not yet been caught. 

The Washington County Sheriff’s Department is working to find him. 

Martinez said, “I haven’t heard anything. I really believe that with all of them working together and all of the different agencies working together, I believe he’s gone, too, and I think the first three or four days there was a sense of fear that you didn’t really know, even leaving out, you were watching even though it was a targeted, it’s still was a thing.”

This Saturday is the Mummer’s Parade at 6 p.m. in Hagerstown. 

Martinez said, “Look for me. I’ll be on an antique fire truck with two other council members. I’m going to be dressed up and on top of the fire truck and throwing candy.” 

Tomorrow is a chili cook-off at city hall. 

Martinez said, “There’s a chili cook-off on the second floor. It’s $5. It starts at 11 to 1. I’m making some chili. I’m going to do the heat. Definitely heat.”