Oregon City politics 'in flux' following recall of mayor
Oregon City Commission President Rachel Lyles Smith had the task of rearranging regional committee assignments for elected officials to make up for Dan Holladay's vacancy.
Holladay was officially recalled from the mayoral position Nov. 30, the last day that County Clerk Sherry Hall could legally certify the result of 68% of city voters choosing to remove him from office in the Nov. 10 election.
Go to orcity.org for more information about filing for the mayoral position between Dec. 7 and Jan. 4 in order for candidates to appear on the March 9 special election ballot.
In announcing new committee assignments Dec. 2, Lyles Smith said replacing Holladay on the Willamette Falls Locks Commission posed a special challenge, since he was appointed to the state's advisory committee by Gov. Kate Brown.
Lyles Smith said City Manager Tony Konkol agreed they wouldn't ask the governor's office for a new appointment until Oregon City's new mayor is seated in March.
"Because things are in flux, I'm just gong to participate from the sidelines and listen in to any meeting that they have," Lyles Smith said. "That was kind of our plan as an interim for the next few months."
Lyles Smith will take over for Holladay on the Willamette Falls Legacy Project. She also claimed Holladay's position on the South Fork Water Board, despite universal interest among Oregon City commissioners in co-chairing the water board with West Linn Mayor Russ Axelrod. Lyles Smith said the mayors of each city have traditionally served on the board.
"I know that there's lots of interest in this; I am going to attend, as my position is supposed to be back filling for the mayor," Lyles Smith said.
Lyles Smith looked to Commissioners Rocky Smith and Frank O'Donnell (both remaining regular South Fork Board members) for support in her becoming interim South Fork chair, saying, "In all transparency, I need both of you two to back me."
Commissioner Frank O'Donnell will take Holladay's former seat on the Brownfield Grant Committee and remain on Beavercreek Employment Area Blue Ribbon Committee.
Commissioner Denyse McGriff will be the commission's liaison to the Citizen Involvement Committee Commission, a position formerly held by Lyles Smith, who will continue attending Clackamas County Coordinating Committee meetings to discuss land-use and transportation plans throughout the region with other elected leaders. Because of her involvement with transportation issues, she and commissioners agreed she would coordinate with cities on the proposed tolling of I-205, an idea universally panned by cities in the region.
Lyles Smith kept her promise to appoint McGriff to the 2040 planning committee, and McGriff also will represent the city on ODOT's proposed pedestrian bridge between Oregon City and West Linn.
Commissioner Smith will continue to serve on the Clackamas Heritage Partners, while McGriff will continue to represent the commission with the Downtown Oregon City Association. Metro Policy Advisory Committee appointments remain the same, with Lyles Smith as the commission's appointee and McGriff as an alternate. McGriff and Smith remain the commission's representatives on the Oregon City Tourism Stakeholder's Group.
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