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City council members take oath of office

Updated: May. 17, 2021 at 9:55 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - After a brief city council meeting, Tom Beckius along with incumbents Sandra Washington and Bennie Shobe were sworn into office. This makes Monday Roy Christensen’s last day in the city council.

Former councilman Roy Christensen said, “Today was an end of a chapter in my life and I’m grateful for having the opportunity to serve lincoln.”

Christensen received a plaque from city officials. and a special thank you from the mayor and his former colleagues.

Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird said, “We got a lot of wonderful things done for the city as you have with this council.” Both Mayor Gaylor Baird and Christensen were sworn into city council eight years ago.

City council member James Michael Bowers said, “You’ve helped the council hear and listen and work together.”

Now Democrat Tom Beckius fills his spot making councilman Richard Meginnis the only republican in the city council.

Councilman Meginnis said, “These people all have what’s best for the city in mind and so I see that going forward and I don’t see anyone voting just because they’re a Democratic or just because I’m a Republican.”

On Election Night, voters won’t see a party affiliation because the Lincoln City Council is technically non-partisan.

Beckius did, however, win on the Democratic ticket, but he won’t do his four-year term voting on party lines.

A goal for Beckius in 2021 is to help provide affordable housing to people in Lincoln.

Councilman Beckius said, “I’m hoping that by fall or by winter of this year we’ll be able to have some good discussions in the community of how to make that attainable here in our community.”

Long term, Beckius wants to modernize Lincoln’s downtown area and parks.

Councilmember James Michael Bowers made history today by being the first openly LGBTQ person appointed as chair of the city council.

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