Craig City Council accepts embattled councilman’s resignation
Craig Councilman Brian MacKenzie officially tendered his resignation after his arrest on three child-sex related felonies, two councilmen confirmed late Thursday.
Councilmen Paul James and Steven Mazzuca said Thursday they had received and accepted MacKenzie’s letter of resignation, which may have been sent electronically.
The Craig Press issued a Freedom of Information Act request Tuesday asking for any email from Councilman Brian MacKenzie sent to city staff since his election in April but has not received an official response yet.
“I’m glad he submitted it,” Mazzuca said in a phone interview Thursday. “It makes things a whole lot less painful for the community.”
If MacKenzie hadn’t resigned, James signaled he would prepare a recall petition. But MacKenzie’s resignation prevents the need for a recall.
“I think that was the good choice,” James said of MacKenzie’s resignation. “In my opinion, it was probably the only choice.”
Though it’s an option under the Craig City Charter to hold an election to fill the seat, in a statement Tuesday, City Manager Peter Brixius said council would be moving to appoint someone to MacKenzie’s seat.
“It sounds like that’s the direction everyone is going,” James said. “For one thing, an election would probably cost $25,000. So, there’s that. Not only that, it would take more time and we need a full council … There has to be an odd number so we can have tie-breakers.”
Mazzuca said he’s looking forward to progressing and continuing the work of council.
“Hopefully we can all move on from this,” he said.
James said he still feels like MacKenzie betrayed the people and their trust.
“It caught us all by surprise. That’s for sure,” James said. “I hate to see this. I feel like we’re making good moves for the city. We’re working to offset the problems we’re looking at economically, and I think we’re doing a good job of that. I just don’t want the actions of one individual to sway people from that. We want people to trust us…We are here working for the people. I definitely feel like that was a betrayal of our trust.”