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Mayor’s resignation shakes up Granite Shoals City Council race

Granite Shoals City Council election

Granite Shoals Mayor Will Skinner (left) faces challenger Phil Ort in the Place 6 race for the City Council. Courtesy photos

When Carl Brugger resigned Oct. 13 as Granite Shoals mayor and councilor and Mayor Pro Tem Will Skinner stepped into the role, it raised a few questions regarding the current City Council election.

Skinner is on the Nov. 3 ballot for his Place 6 seat, facing challenger Phil Ort. 

So, what happens if he wins his re-election bid?

City Attorney Joshua Katz explained there are several scenarios that could play out, and each one of them means Skinner, if he wants to stay on the council, will have to run again in May 2021.

“If Mr. Skinner wins (in November), the Place 6 seat will be vacant, and council will appoint the position,” Katz said. “If Mr. Ort wins, Mr. Ort will become the Place 6 councilman. But in either outcome, Mr. Skinner is mayor until 2021.”

Currently, Skinner is the mayor as he serves out Brugger’s term, which ends in May 2021. He is not the Place 6 councilor for which he was elected.

“As of May 2021, his term as mayor is over,” Katz said. “He will have three choices: One — file to run for a new term as mayor; two — instead, file to run for a new term as a city councilman; or three — not file to run for either, in which case his term as mayor is over and he no longer holds any elected office in Granite Shoals.”

Brugger resigned as mayor stating in his resignation letter that he didn’t want the position to become a lighting rod in preparation for a May 2021 recall election. The Citizens’ Rights Group of Granite Shoals obtained enough signatures to force the recall election, which targeted Brugger and Place 2 Councilor Bruce Jones because of their support of a $37,000 raise in August for City Manager Jeff Looney. 

Even though Brugger’s term expires in May and he wouldn’t be eligible for re-election due to term limits, the group went ahead with the recall effort.

Jones is up for re-election in November and has no opponent. 

Early voting is underway through Friday, Oct. 30, for the November election. Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 3.