Goshen City Council will decide Tuesday, July 16 whether or not to create a deputy mayor position.
The deputy mayor, who will be appointed by Mayor Allan Kauffman, would serve as mayor if or when Kauffman would be out of town or out of contact with the city.
The creation of the position would simply make official a process that has been used at least since Mayor Mike Puro held the office.
Previously, the acting mayor would simply announce to the Board of Works that they would be out of town and would temporarily appoint someone to serve in their absence.
Kauffman said was not entirely comfortable with that system, however, citing concerns about the safety of an absent mayor’s family and property if their absence is announced.
By appointing a deputy mayor, Kauffman said he would only need to notify the City Council president and Clerk Treasurer when he would be gone and when the deputy mayor would be serving.
As the ordinance that would establish the position is currently written, the appointee would have to be a city employee, but Kauffman said he would be open to allowing the appointment of any resident if the council desired such a change.
The appointment itself, however, would remain the decision of the mayor and would not require council approval. The deputy mayor would generally only be allowed to serve 15 days in any 60-day period. A letter from City Attorney Larry Barkes noted that the new position would warrant no new compensation for the deputy mayor.
Kauffman says he has some ideas of who he would appoint, but has not yet decided who he would choose if the ordinance passes Tuesday. He added that his decision will likely not be made by Tuesday’s meeting but that the appointment would come sooner rather than later.
What do you think? Is establishing an official deputy mayor a good idea for the city of Goshen?