SIDNEY — The city of Sidney has a new mayor and vice mayor. Mardie Milligan was unanimously voted in with a 7-0 vote of affirmation as the new mayor of Sidney Monday evening. Steve Wagner was also unanimously voted in by Sidney City Council members to be the city’s new vice mayor.
Sidney City Council opened its Monday evening meeting with the first order of business of swearing-in recently elected members Milligan, Wagner, and newest member Joseph Moniaci, along with Ed Hamaker, who will continue to serve until his replacement is appointed by council. Immediately following the swearing-in ceremonies, council went into an executive session to consider the appointment of a public official.
After a short recess from Council Chambers and into the executive session, members returned approximately 15 minutes later to come back into the public session. Once back in the public session, council adopted two resolutions, naming Milligan as mayor and then Wagner as vice mayor. City Clerk Kari Egbert then swore-in Milligan and Wagner with their spouses by their sides.
Milligan moved to the center seat reserved for the mayor of the city of Sidney and resumed the business of City Council. She asked council members to begin thinking about the issues to be discussed at the upcoming council retreat, of which will be scheduled for sometime in March or April. Strategic planning is one of the topics to be discussed.
Milligan also asked members to consider which committee assignments they would like. When discussing upcoming special council meetings to go into executive sessions, Egbert informed members the city received five applicants’ letters of interest to be appointed to City Council.
When asked for a comment, newly elected Mayor Mardie Milligan said, “I look forward to continuing to serve and working with the city and council and continuing the good work that the previous council, including Mayor Barhorst has done.”
“Grateful,”said new Vice Mayor Steve Wagner, when asked for his thoughts. “I feel grateful that council members have have entrusted me with this honor.”
Mike Barhorst, who previously served as mayor of the city twice, said by email, “I have had the opportunity to represent council and the citizens of Sidney for eight terms as mayor. I’m one of just eight individuals whose had the opportunity to serve as mayor twice. I have great respect for the City Charter and the fact that the city’s ‘mothers and fathers’ wanted the mayor to be council’s leader. They avoided having citizens directly elect the mayor so that council could elect the individual they wanted to lead them forward. A majority of council believes that with the hiring of a new city manager, it is time to move in a new direction.”
According to Egbert, Milligan has served as a member of council since 2005 and as vice mayor since 2009. Her two-year term as mayor will end on Dec. 1, 2023. Wagner has served as fourth ward council member since 2011. He replaces Milligan as vice mayor. Barhorst served as a member of council from 1977-1989, much of that time as either vice-mayor or mayor. Until Monday, he also served as mayor since being re-elected to serve on City Council in 2007.