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Ferry election creates stir

Posted: December 16, 2011 7:00 a.m.
Updated: December 16, 2011 7:00 a.m.

Two days into Santa Clarita Mayor Laurie Ender's term, and people are still abuzz about her second in command.

Frank Ferry is the city's mayor pro-tem.

On Tuesday, the city councilman nominated himself for the position with no challengers.

Many in Santa Clarita, citing the tradition of council members rotating in order through the positions of mayor pro-tem and then mayor, had expected Councilman Bob Kellar to become mayor pro-tem for 2012.

According to several local politicians, including Ferry and outgoing Mayor Marsha McLean, the tradition of rotating council members in order was a practice rescinded about 10 years ago.

If council members knew in advance of Tuesday's gavel-passing about Ferry's decision to nominate himself, it's only because he was excited about the prospect and had shared the news with friends and City Hall staffers, the new mayor pro-tem said Thursday.

"I had breakfast with Bob (Kellar) and let him know I was going to go for the pro-tem position," Ferry said Thursday. "I did let the city manager know. I let Gail (Ortiz, city spokeswoman) know, and I let 12 to 15 (staff) people know."

More buzz was sparked in part with the printing of certificates prior to Tuesday's vote that listed Ferry as mayor pro-tem.

The certificates were printed as a way of being expeditious, Ortiz explained.

An "over zealous" City Hall secretary, eager to get her work done, printed an equal number of certificates identifying both Ferry and Kellar as mayor pro-tem, Ortiz said.

She said pre-printed Superbowl T-shirts naming both competing teams as the winner is a fitting analogy to describe the pre-printed certificates.

Certificates are presented to deserving city groups such as Santa Clarita Valley Safe Rides, which was honored Tuesday.

The incorrect certificates were simply destroyed, Ortiz said.

"We had to re-sign some certificates," Ferry said Thursday. "We did about 50 of them in advance."

On Tuesday, after Ferry nominated himself, McLean seconded the motion.

There were no other nominations for the pro-tem position.
Kellar was the only "no" vote for the motion to have Ferry become mayor pro-tem.

"I would prefer to go with the usual progression," Kellar said publicly when polled for his vote. "I vote no."




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