Rogers joins commission; Welch to become mayor

Mayor Jay Warren presents a plaque of appreciation to Jim Sybrant, left, for his service as a city commissioner. Sybrant stepped into the role for the remaining four months after the resignation of Dan Jurkovich.

Lower right, Leslie Shook administers the oath of office to newly-elected commissioners Kanyon Ginger, Scott Rogers and Duane Oestmann.

Three Arkansas City commissioners were sworn in Monday to begin their terms.

Incumbents Kanyon Ginger and Duane Oestmann were re-elected in November, and newly-elected commissioner Scott Rogers has replaced outgoing commissioner Jim Sybrant, who was appointed to fill an unexpired term left open when Dan Jurkovich stepped down last  year.

Gingher and Rogers each will serve four-year terms and Oestmann will serve a two-year term. Rogers on Monday also appointed a vice-mayor.

Karen Welch was unanimously chosen to secede Jay Warren as mayor, but Welch did not attend Tuesday’s meeting due to illness, so Warren will continue as mayor until she is able. The vice mayor, in this case Rogers, will take the gavel at Friday’s work session if Welch can’t make it, Warren said.

Warren thanked Sybrant for his willingness to serve and presented him with a plaque of appreciation.

Reflecting back on his brief role as commissioner, Sybrant said he had fulfilled his promise to restore the East Chestnut Avenue bridge back into service.

“I was also challenged by Commissioner Duane Oestmann to focus on other issues of the city, which I think I’ve done,” he said.

Sybrant said Rogers should be ready meet the difficult tasks of selecting a new city attorney, a position currently open, and a new city manager, with Nick Hernandez expected to leave sometime in May.

“There are many city issues — most of them you are going to get your feet wet in about four to six months,” Sybrant said. “I’ve already been there — I wish you luck.”

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