City Councilman Harvey Cahoon announced Tuesday he will resign his post March 6 because he is moving out of state.
The announcement adds a new chapter to the City Council shuffle that started almost two years ago when council member Betty Nay-lor resigned, followed in 1988 when Mayor Bob Roberts resigned in midterm.Cahoon was appointed to the council to fill the vacancy Naylor created by resigning. Penny Atkinson was appointed to the council to fill a seat vacated by Kristin Lambert, who was appointed mayor when Roberts quit.
Now the council will need to appoint someone to fill Cahoon's post. The replacement would then have to decide whether to run for election in November to try to retain the seat.
Atkinson has already said she will run for election this fall to try to keep her post. Councilman Paul Henderson, one year into his term, has shown an interest in running for mayor this fall. Lambert has said she will not run.
City residents wanting a full-time mayor in a mayor/
council form of government instead of West Jordan's current city manager/council form, which has a part-time mayor, are circulating a petition that would put the issue on the ballot - if about 1,300 signatures can be collected.
The group promoting the change has asked the council to bypass the petition process by calling the election itself, an idea the council has not responded to favorably.
The person appointed to fill Ca-hoon's seat could either reinforce or soften the council's current, informal position of keeping its distance from the special-election issue by letting the petition drive run its course.
Recent political events in West Jordan were a factor in Cahoon's decision to move out of state, he said. A bond proposal promoted by Cahoon and the rest of the council was defeated in November. Its demise was an example of progress that had a chance in West Jordan but failed at the hands of the voters, he said.
"I feel a little sad for West Jordan," he said. "I'm sure there are other people like myself that added up all the positives and negatives (about the city) and ended up voting with their feet. It's unfortunate because West Jordan has the potential of being quite a nice place if the people would support the direction of the leaders."
Cahoon currently works for Questar Corp. and is the former president and chief executive officer of Interstate Brick in West Jordan.