The Quartzsite town council voted today to remove many of the powers currently held by the town mayor and give them instead to the 7-member council.
This action will be seen by many as part of an ongoing feud between the council and Mayor Ed Foster, who alleges that the council and police chief violated open meeting laws, refused his lawful access to fiscal records and wrongfully fired police officers in politically-motivated retaliation, among other things.
The purposes of the ordinance voted in today, the town said, was to ‘clean up’ the codes governing the mayor’s role, and to ensure that the mayor had no more powers than those afforded to him by state law.
Quartzsite Town Attorney Martin Brannan said he had been requested to write up the ordinance, and gave an overview of some of the changes that would take effect, which included stripping the mayor of the right to chair council meetings.
Controversy has embroiled the town’s council meetings in recent months after local newspaper publisher Jennifer ‘Jade’ Jones was arrested while speaking at the podium during a ‘Call to the Public’. The video of her arrest became a viral hit on YouTube and put Quartzsite in the spotlight for thousands of pro-liberty Americans. Mayor Foster can be heard on the recording repeatedly telling the police officers, “You are violating my rules of order.”
After today’s meeting, Mayor Foster said he would like the changes put to the voters in a referendum.