During Monday’s meeting, Wapakoneta City Council president announced he is resigning from his post effective June 8.
Council President Don Jump informed his fellow councilors during Monday’s council meeting that he accepted the position of emergency response coordinator with the Auglaize County Health Department and must resign from the legislative body.
“I am really going to miss working with the people, working with the administration, working with the councilors, attending the meetings and being informed about what is going on,” Jump told the Wapakoneta Daily News after the meeting. “That might not be as easy to keep up as it was.”
Several councilors praised the work of the council president during and after Monday’s meeting.
“I found you a pleasure to work with, to argue with, to discuss issues with and I will greatly miss you,” Councilor-at-large Tom Finkelmeier Jr. said. “I appreciate your service to this legislative body and you have left some big shoes to fill.”
Wapakoneta 4th Ward Councilor Dan Graf also weighed in.
“Your presence will be missed as you oversaw council meetings but also your attendance at all the committee meetings that you participated in,” Graf said. “We also will miss the preparation that you came to those meetings with. You will be missed.”
Mayor Rodney Metz chimed in on the two-term president.
“You were a pleasure to work with and you served your city well,” Metz said. “You did great, you were educated on procedure and the issues and that is what it takes to serve the city residents well.”
As council president, Jump was charged with overseeing council meetings and establishing committee assignments for councilors.
Wapakoneta 3rd Ward Councilor Bonnie Wurst, who was elected president pro-tem at the beginning of the year, will take over his responsibilities in the interim.
A frequent guest at committee meetings, Jump noted he felt having participated in those meetings helped serve as president.
“I believe it is very important to attend the committee meetings — I never looked at it from the aspect that I might have to vote — but for me it was dealing with the ordinances on the dias. When I had the background information on the issue, this helped me to determine how the discussion during council meetings should go,” Jump said. “During council meetings, you try to guide the discussion and to keep order and so forth — to me it was a tremendous asset to have background on the issues.”
In his new position, he may still attend committee meetings — but more as a guest providing councilors with information from the state and county health departments.
Jump, who was up for re-election in November, was elected twice by voters as council president. He succeeded Steve Henderson, who ran for mayor in 2007.
Jump, who had attended council meetings for more than a year prior to his election, said he felt well-prepared for assuming his new responsibilities when he took office in 2008, but he “certainly learned some of the things procedurally that I wasn’t ready for and that I needed some refreshers on Robert’s Rules of Orders.”
Jump, who served as a firefighter, fire captain and fire chief, will succeed Michael Wurst at the county Health Department as emergency response coordinator.
Due to state policy, he also will be forced to resign his seats on the Wapakoneta Area Economic Development Council and the Auglaize County Republican Central Committee.
The Republican Central Committee will be given the task to appoint a interim president and they have the authority to replace Jump on the ballot.
“I am very honored and humbled by the response from the voters and the constituents to allow me to serve in this capacity,” Jump said. “I am sure things will get worked out, so I just want you to know this will be my last meeting.”