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Elk Grove Selects New Mayor in Messy Manner

Mayor Jim Cooper
Cooper Mayor, Hume Vice Mayor

Although the mayoral position in Elk Grove is largely a ceremonial job that in the past has been filled in a relatively orderly manner, tonight’s selection of mayor can be best described as messy.

 In what will be Elk Grove’s last mayor selected by the city council, members selected Jim Cooper to be the Mayor for 2012. Before selecting Cooper in a 3-2 vote, the council heard a pitch by Steve Detrick to continue in his position as Mayor for another year.

During a lengthy introduction of the city’s numerous department heads and discussing various successes the city has enjoyed during the last year, Detrick made a pitch for continuity through 2012.

“This is the best year this city has ever had,” Detrick opined. “So my recommendation is to keep the council the way it is. That is the position I take tonight.”

After Detrick’s suggestion Elk Grove resident and former city planning commissioner Paul Lindsay urged the council to select Pat Hume as the mayor because he is the only current council member not running for office next year. Lindsay, who is a member of the community group Elk Grove First, noted that he was speaking on his own behalf.

After Lindsay’s comments Hume acknowledged that he is not running for any office next year. “I would be willing to accept if nominated,” he said.

Detrick quickly noted that the filing deadline for next year’s election is August and that papers could still be filed up to that time. Hume won reelection to his second council term in 2010 and has been rumored to be interested in challenging fellow council member Gary Davis who is running to be Elk Grove’s first popularly elected mayor.

“I told you Steve, I am not running [for mayor],” Hume quickly retorted.

During deliberations council member Sophia Scherman made a motion nominating Hume as mayor but the motion died for a lack of second. Davis then reiterated a motion he made very early in the proceedings nominating Cooper.

Detrick, who was not nominated, seconded the motion. Hume and Scherman voted against Cooper.

Hume was subsequently nominated and elected vice mayor by a 4-1 vote with Cooper voting in opposition. Cooper and Hume assumed their new positions on the council after a brief recess.

Cooper, one of two original members still on the council served as the city's first mayor in 2000 and again in 2007.

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