(The above photo is from the City of Fort Wayne’s website.) Â
At tonight’s Fort Wayne City Council meeting, Deputy Mayor Greg Purcell spoke to the Council at the start of the meeting. Â He said a few words to several of the Council, in fact reminding John Shoaff about a “rough time they had over a parking lot when Purcell was leaving.” Â He spoke about Marty Bender (Captain Council then, Deputy Chief Council now) and few others, then turned to Glynn Hines (D-6th). Â He began his comments by thanking Hines for meeting with the Mayor. Â He then went on to say:Â
[…] I want to let you know that I probably would have disagreed with you on your position on the Fire/Police Merit issue, but I certainly do agree with you on your highlighting the issue about the need for diversity in this City government.
He went on to talk about the reason this has become more important to him – I’ll let the mp3 file fill you in on it. Â He then went on to commit to helping with racial diversity in the administration. Â I do want to add that when Hines could finally get words in, he said, “The only disadvantage you have on the Merit ordinance, you don’t get to vote” Â It wasn’t said angrily or anything like that, in fact there was laughter around the table.
Anyway, I’m not sure of the dynamics of Purcell with some of the individual Council persons, so I cannot comment further on it. Â However, it will be interesting to see how this develops – especially with the budget hearings just around the corner.
City Council Attorney Joseph G. Bonahoom’s Memo, talked about in last week’s City Council meeting, has been distributed to the City Council. Â You may download it here.
Deputy Mayor Greg Purcell’s Appointment Press Release
MAYOR NAMES NEW DEPUTY MAYOR; A VETERAN RETURNS TO CITY GOVERNMENT
Purcell served under three mayors, returns to fill Deputy Mayor role for Henry administration
Mayor Tom Henry announced that Greg Purcell has accepted an offer to serve as Deputy Mayor. Purcell is a familiar face to many in Fort Wayne, having served in City government from the mid-1980s to 2001.
“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to bring Greg back to Fort Wayne and to have his depth of knowledge, experience and commitment on our staff. His past achievements are impressive but it’s what we plan on accomplishing in the next several years that will be even more exciting,” said Mayor Henry.
Purcell, who has served as the County Administrator in Calhoun County, Mich., since January 2001, says he is excited to be coming back to a community with so much happening.
“The downtown projects, Harrison Square and Renaissance Pointe, and the opportunities with the north river area, discussions about co-locating City and County law enforcement departments and possibly moving the City and County offices out of the City-County Building. — It’s all energizing and indicates to me a lot of positive movement in the community,” said Purcell.
Purcell replaces Mark Becker who left May 31 to join the Northeast Indiana Regional Marketing Partnership. Purcell served under Mayor Win Moses as Director of Community Development & Planning from 1986, then was retained in that position when it was re-aligned as director of Community and Economic Development after Mayor Paul Helmke was elected in 1988. Helmke eventually appointed him to Chief of Staff, a position he held until September 1999. At that time, he was selected as Director of Parks and Recreation, and was again retained when a new mayor came into office, this time Mayor Graham Richard in January 2000. Purcell left in January 2001 to accept the position with Calhoun County, Mich. which he currently holds.
“I’ve long admired Tom Henry as a political leader with whom I’ve worked in many capacities,” Purcell said. “He could work with anyone, of any affiliation, to get things done and to move forward. I respect that ability and look forward to adding my efforts to bring groups together and strengthen Fort Wayne to make it an even better place for citizens and businesses to grow.”
Purcell, who had to give substantial notice at his current position, is expected to relocate to Fort Wayne in the next few months and begin full time duties by the third week of September.
You may view the press release, with additional photos and YouTube video clip, here.