Grand Island Mayor Jay Vavricek announced the resignation of City Administrator Mary Lou Brown at Tuesday's council meeting, shocking council members.
Vavricek said he had asked and received Brown's resignation, effective September 30th.
"I’ve never come across anyone so dedicated, hardworking, and diligent. Yet, responsibility of day-to-day operations of the city and its success is the responsibility of the city administrator and going forward we cannot go on as we have," Vavricek told the council. "So a replacement will be sought in concert with stronger council involvement and acceptance and a shared decision."
"I’ll seek an interim city administrator, seek council input, and consult with Council President Gilbert as we move forward to determine if anyone on staff may work or if another interim outside of city employment might be a possibility," Vavricek said.
The mayor said he'll use a "Mayor's Advisory Group" with both young and old members to conduct a nationwide search for Brown's permanent replacement.
"It’s time to move on and doing what’s right for Grand Island’s future," Vavricek told the council. "I believe with these initial steps we can and must go forward positively, all pulling together on the same rope which will give us added confidence to overcome any hurdles, overcome any challenges, and overcome any self-doubt that has impacted our best hope for today and tomorrow.”
The mayor would not speak directly with 10/11 Tuesday night, but Council President Peg Gilbert said Vavricek consulted with her before the meeting.
"It's just been difficult over the last couple years and public support and support of staff," she said. "It's just a new beginning, we want a clean slate and we just want the very best for our community and our citizens."