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Jung returns to board of aldermen

by Alan McArthur
Landmark reporter

Platte City has a new alderman, and also a new board president.

At a board of aldermen meeting Tuesday night, former alderman Aaron Jung was appointed and Andy Stanton was voted to be the new board president.

On Tuesday, the mayor made the appointment and before the matter was voted on, current board members had a chance to ask questions of Jung.

Jung’s pending appointment was exclusively reported by The Landmark at last Thursday evening.

Marsha Clark, alderman, said that before she would consider voting for Jung as the appointment, she had some questions for him to answer.

She then asked him who he represents when he makes a decision, whether it is his district, Platte City as a whole, or himself and who is most important. She also asked how many people he polls on an issue before making a decision on the board. Her last question was: What changed in his life that he wanted to be an alderman again? Jung had said he did not seek reelection because he wanted some time to focus on his business and family.

“When it comes to it, I vote with the public before I vote for myself,” said Jung. “Many times I'll look up above and pray before a tough decision needs to be made.”

Jung said he also tries to poll as many people as he can before a decision.

“I worked as a sole proprietor, but we're incorporated now,” said Jung. “My focus was getting my business up and going, now I have it up and going which will enable me to participate again.”

Clark said she still was stuck on the issue of Keith Moody's firing while Jung was on the board previously.

“We had a lot of work and money spent to find our new city administrator,” said Clark. “I can't get that out of my mind.”

“I'll be the first to tell you, I stand behind every decision I have made,” said Jung.

Some of the other aldermen then weighed in on the issue.

“I served with Aaron in the past, and I'm glad he’s back, if he gets back,” said Stanton, board president.

“Aaron is one of the reasons I ran,” said Debbie Kirkpatrick, alderman. “He was the first alderman to knock on my door and ask how I felt.”

Kirkpatrick ran as a write-in candidate for Jung's position on the board in Ward 3 in April.

Tony Paolillo then made a motion to pass a resolution to appoint Jung to the alderman position, Kirkpatrick then seconded the motion. The resolution passed with a vote of 4-1, with Clark voting against.

Jung previously served on the board from April 2006 to April 2008. Jung was also the board president for one year.

“He is eligible and expressed a desire to serve the unexpired term,” said Mayor Frank Offutt, in a phone interview on Thursday night. “He has knowledge with the TDD (Transportation Development District) and the issues in Ward 3.”

Sloan served on the city's personnel committee and public works committee. On Tuesday, Ron Stone was appointed to the personnel committee and the spot on the public works committee may be filled by Jung at a later meeting.

Jung will fill the seat for 16 weeks until the election in April. The seat is up for reelection in April and eligible residents may file for the open seat between Dec. 16 and Jan. 20 at city hall.

Last week The Landmark reported Sloan had submitted his resignation from the board after selling his home in Platte City.

Sloan was recently married and is moving to Leawood, Kan. to live with his new wife and 13-year-old step-son. Sloan told The Landmark he will continue to work in Platte City.

Jung was sworn in by the city clerk on Wednesday morning at city hall.

Also during the meeting, Stanton was voted by the aldermen as the board president. Stanton was voted to the position with a vote of 5-0.

Paolillo nominated Stanton for the position and Kirkpatrick seconded the nomination. All of the aldermen then voted in favor of making Stanton the president. Sloan had been the board president.


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