Lancaster City Council appoints acting mayor after ousting predecessor

vhoneycutt@herald-leader.comNovember 29, 2013 

Lancaster City Council member Chris Davis was sworn in during November to serve out the term of ousted mayor Brenda Powers.

PHOTO PROVIDED

The Lancaster City Council has appointed council member Chris Davis to serve out the term of ousted mayor Brenda Powers.

Council member Jeff Adams said the council made the decision Wednesday that Davis would be the mayor until January 2015.

Last week, the council had ousted Powers from office with a 6-0 vote.

Powers had been elected in 2010 to a four-year term.

During a public hearing last week, witnesses, including City Clerk Shari Lane, said Powers had created a hostile work environment at city hall.

The public hearing was called after Powers and Lane had a heated discussion Oct. 31 that was broken up by police.

Adams said Friday in a telephone interview that the council members thought Davis was the best person to be the mayor because he was the top vote-getter in the city council races in the most recent election.

"The vote total doesn't lie," Adams said. "To us, that showed public trust."

The office of mayor in Lancaster is a part-time position, said Davis, 30, a special education teacher at Garrard County High School.

Davis said he would work every day before and after school in the mayor's office.

Davis said he would work with the council members and with city employees as a team.

"Our employees are the backbone of the city of Lancaster," Davis said. "We are a team. It will take a team for us to make the changes ... for the future we are looking at in Lancaster."

Davis said he would emphasize "positive energy" and customer service.

Meanwhile, Powers, 67, has said she did nothing wrong.

Brad Guthrie, a Harrodsburg attorney representing Powers, said last week that he will recommend that Powers appeal the council's decision to Garrard Circuit Court. Guthrie could not be reached Friday.

Valarie Honeycutt Spears: (859) 231-3409. Twitter: @vhspears.

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