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Oakridge City Administrator pro tem termination still unclear as the Herald continues to request for special meeting minutes and recording

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Oakridge City Hall Herald photo

April 5, 2022

 

ELLA BROWN/Correspondent/The Herald– The Oakridge City Council met Thursday evening for their regular session with newly appointed pro tem City Administrator in attendance, Police Chief Kevin Martin, following the abrupt dismissal of Kevin Cronin at a special session last week.

 

It is still unclear exactly why Cronin’s 6-month pro tem contract was terminated so abruptly, as the council has yet to post the promised Zoom recording or written minutes of the special session where Cronin was terminated on their website.

Mayor Hollett announces on Facebook the action taken

“On April 27th, the Oakridge City Council ended the contract between the City of Oakridge and West Coast Cronin Clan Co. This decision came after the Council felt that the Pro Tem duties were not being fulfilled,” said Mayor Chrissy Hollett in a Facebook post on April 28th.

The Herald had a few questions and requests

Correspondent Gary Carl spoke for The Herald at the meeting on Thursday, requesting that the Herald be notified of any anticipated executive sessions, the time and place of any regular meetings, and that there be at least a 24-hour’s notice to any special meetings. Following is the letter read by Carl at the meeting:

 

Pursuant to ORS 192.660 (6),  No Executive Session may be held for the purpose of taking any final action or making any final decision.

Did This council hold an executive session for the purpose of evaluating Mr. Kevin Cronin, the City’s chief executive officer? 

ORS 192.660 (8) expressly states that “a governing body my not use an executive session for purposes of evaluating a chief executive officer or other officer…”. And if you did not hold an executive session for this purpose, what were you considering? 

If, however, you held a “Special Meeting” for the purpose of evaluating Mr. Cronin, did you give 24 hours’ notice to the Highway 58 Herald prior to this “Special Meeting”? as you are required to do pursuant to ORS 192.640 (3).

And finally, your attorney informed the Hwy 58 Herald that the minutes or a recording of your “Special Meeting” would be posted to the city’s website.  It has been about 1 week now since the council had their “Special Meeting” and still there has been no information regarding this meeting.  I would like to know when we might expect to have the recording or minutes of this meeting?

Pursuant to ORS 192.640 (1). And on Behalf of the Hwy 58 Herald, I respectfully request being notified of the time and place for holding regular meetings as well a list of the principal subjects anticipated to be considered.

Pursuant to ORS 192.640 (2) And on behalf of the Hwy 58 Herald I respectfully request being notified of any anticipated executive session and,

Pursuant to ORS 192.640 (3) receiving at least 24 hours’ notice for any Special Meeting and the minutes for any such meeting describing the emergency justifying less than 24 hours’ notice.

Pursuant to ORS 192.650 (1) And On behalf of the Highway 58 Herald respectfully request the written minutes or recordings of all meetings and giving a true reflection of the matters discussed at the meeting and the views of the participants.  I also am requesting the items set out in ORS 1902.650 (1) a, b, c, a

“Your attorney informed The Highway 58 Herald that the minutes or recording of your special meeting would be posted to the city’s website. It has been about a week now since the council had their special meeting, and still, there has been no information regarding this meeting,” said Carl. “I would like to know when we should expect to have the recording or minutes of this meeting.”

Business from the City Administrator, pro tem

As for business from the City Administrator, Martin said he has been, “very busy trying to handle both [City Administrator and Police Chief] and unbury [himself] from wearing both hats.”

City well no.2

Martin also gave an update regarding the Public Works Department’s request for a revamp of Oakridge’s Well No.2, which plays an important role in the city’s access to drinking water. Robeart Chrisman spoke in favor of repairing and revamping the well, which he said was in the city’s best interest.

 

The council voted in favor of authorizing the award, which would authorize Public Works and the City Engineer to move forward with construction that will begin in late summer/fall of 2022.

Ella Brown is a Junior at the University of Oregon majoring in Journalism and minoring in Political Science. Ella grew up in Portland, Oregon and hopes to be a culture and arts writer/reporter after she graduates college.

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