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The Farmington City Council approved results from the April 2 election and swore in members of the council, as well as the municipal prosecuting attorney when it met in regular session late last week.

Mayor Larry Forsythe also reappointed Edward Felker, who he had appointed to fill the remainder of Ward II Councilman John Crouch’s term following his death in February.

Crouch, who filed for reelection but died after his name could be legally removed from the ballot, received 288 votes to opponent Perry Willmore's 153 votes in the race for the one-year term.

Willmore was angered by what he felt was the city’s attempt to disrupt his election chances by encouraging people to vote for Crouch so the mayor could appoint Felker to fill the vacancy — an accusation the mayor denied.

Because he has been appointed, Felker will have to run again and win in April 2020 to retain the seat.

Incumbent City Prosecutor Julie McCarver won reelection against opponent and Farmington attorney Cira Duffe in a race that become somewhat heated early on.

McCarver retained her position with 63 percent of the vote. Following the election, Duffe accused McCarver on social media of falsely stating in a political mailer that Duffe was living with a convicted felon, along with a list of other accusations.

After being contacted by the Daily Journal about the matter, McCarver admitted that it had been a case of mistaken identity on her part. While the convicted felon shared the same first and last name as the man with whom Duffe lives, they were not the same individual. 

Incumbent council members, all of whom were reelected to their positions, included Ward I Councilman John Robinson, Ward II Councilman Greg Hampton, Ward III Councilman Wayne Linnenbringer and Ward IV Councilman Vanessa Pegram.

All were led in their oaths of office by City Clerk Ashley Bischoff.

Prior to Felker's appointment and taking the oath of office, the mayor said, “Before we do this, I’d just like to make a brief, brief comment. This was in no shape or form to do anything against anybody in the city of Farmington.

"I put Edward on Planning and Zoning and whenever I get a first impression, I stick with my first impression. It’s the best impression you’re going to get. I had a very fine impression of Edward.

“I was very thrilled that we were going to have a young talented person to serve on Planning and Zoning. In the untimely passing of John Crouch, we had to do something to fill the position for the last 30 days. I called Edward again and said, ‘How would you like to be a councilman instead of on Planning and Zoning?’ He said, ‘Let me get back to you,’ and in a couple of days he called me and said, ‘I’d love to.’ I thanked him for that.”

City Administrator Greg Beavers explained the process.

“If there is a vacancy in office the council appoints a person until the next regular municipal election. We have a similar situation with Greg Hampton So, next year in Ward II we’ll have a two-year term to be elected and a one-year term to be elected and that will get us all squared back up.”

In other action, the council chose Councilman Robinson as mayor pro-tem, Mayor Forsythe made committee appointments, and it was announced that Parks and Recreation Director Chris Conway had submitted his resignation to return to his hometown.

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Kevin R. Jenkins is the managing editor of the Farmington Press and can be reached at 573-756-8927 or kjenkins@farmingtonpressonline.com

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