UPDATE: On Monday, Silvis Mayor Matt Carter shared a statement about a no-confidence vote scheduled Tuesday at the end of the regular Committee of the Whole meeting.
“In six yeas of working on behalf of the residents and businesses in the City of Silvis, I have not experienced a situation like the one that has arisen in the past few months,” he says in the statement. “The members of the City Council and I share in the responsibility to the public we serve. I take my sworn responsibilities seriously and do not act in any way that disregards my obligation under Illinois law and local ordinance.”
“With that said, certain members of the City Council have acted poorly since late 2022. I know that there has been a special meeting called for this evening at which these members intend to advance a motion on a vote of no confidence in me as mayor. Notably, this is a first in my service to the City, and I note that the effort arises in retaliation for my efforts to further administrative accountability, to avoid unnecessary costs, to provide oversight, and admittedly to address violations of Illinois law that have occurred as a result of the conduct of these certain members of the City Council and the attorneys.”
“Last week, the City Attorney resigned, and I acted to immediately appoint a new attorney for the city of Silvis. Also last week, I terminated services of any kind from an attorney and firm that was originally relied on for labor/employment matters after, without City Council authorization, this attorney began acting in a role far beyond the scope of her work for the city and did so at the direction of the City Administrator. Going forward, Ancel Glink (https://ancelglink.com) will be representing the City. No other attorney is authorized to act for the city. Ancel Glink is respected throughout Illinois and will serve the City in all necessary respects.”
“I have also retained an attorney to act on my behalf relating to matters I have taken and will take in my official capacity as Mayor. Mark Daniel will be assisting me, as Mayor, on matters that are more particular to me than they are to the City even though there may be some overlap with the work of Ancel Glink. My retention of Attorney Daniel arises only after the same members of the City Council posted a special meeting notice with the sole agenda item being the no-confidence vote. This is not a choice I made without necessity, and it is one that solely arises as a result of the missteps of the members of the City Council who seem inclined to burden government on behalf of the residents we serve with scurrilous infighting and detours from what we all share as our true purpose in serving in government.”
“Beginning in Spring 2023, issues arose in relation to the structure of finance and administrative supervision of finance at the City. In some respects, I experienced pushback from the City Administrator as I worked to maintain longstanding protocols in the City relating to finance so that the City Council could better get its hands around finance and auditing protocols and, only then, responsibly make decisions based on input from staff and the auditor for the City. As Mayor, I was concerned with the demands of positions in the finance department of the Village, and placing finance under the direct supervision of the City Administrator – something that had not been done in Silvis in any recent time.”
“Later, the City Administrator expanded the service of an attorney the City has relied on for only labor and employment matters. She did so without me and she did so without the City Council’s involvement.”
“More recently, on Jan. 10, 2023, certain members of the City Council called me into a meeting with this labor and employment attorney, the City Attorney, and the City Administrator. This meeting involved a majority of a quorum of the City Council. Despite the view of the labor and employment attorney that the meeting was lawful, anyone in municipal government is trained to understand when meetings occur and how to avoid a non-published meeting, closed to the public, since these are obvious Open Meeting Act violations. I left the meeting after protesting that it constituted an illegal meeting under Illinois law.”
“At a recent meeting of the City Council, the City Council again at the urging of these certain members, illegally adjourned to closed session without taking a roll call vote and upon grounds for conducting a closed meeting that were, at best, suspect and unlisted exceptions to the open meeting requirement.”
“Adding to this, they illegally voted to exclude me from the meeting. The City Council then placed the recording of the closed meeting in the hands of this labor employment attorney – not the clerk who is the one who holds City records such as closed meeting recordings. “
“The effort to proceed with a meeting Tuesday (sic), Feb. 20, 2023, at 5:30 p.m. is ending now. That meeting will not occur since the City did not post the notice of the meeting 48 hours in advance of the meeting. Further, by 11 a.m. today (Monday, Feb. 20) there was no notice of the meeting on the City’s website. The City will have its regular meeting this evening. It will be followed by the special meeting called by certain members of the City Council at which the vote of no confidence is the only action item on the agenda. I intend to fully defend my actions this evening – every one of which has been fully compliant with my duties and responsibilities to all of us in Silvis. The motivation behind the vote of no confidence is naked retaliation against me for actions that any Mayor would, and should, take under the circumstances.”
Very truly yours,
Mayor Matt Carter
Cc: City Clerk
EARLIER UPDATE: In a post to his Facebook page, Silvis Mayor Matt Carter posted a copy of the notice of the vote of no confidence and stated the following:
“Public notice! This is what a Mayor receives when disagreeing with the city council for termination of a longtime employee, and stands up against the council and defends the City Clerk, it’s (sic) duties and responsibilities. Sorry, I’m not part of the good old boy group!”
Local 4 News has not yet received a statement from Aldermen Trulson, Lohse, Dyer or Mayor Carter.
EARLIER UPDATE: Three Silvis aldermen have called for a vote of No Confidence against Mayor Matt Carter at the end of Tuesday’s regularly scheduled Committee of the Whole meeting.
First Ward Alderman Tony Trulson, Third Ward Alderman Rick Lohse and Fourth Ward Alderman Josh Dyer called for the vote against Carter, whose second term expires in 2025. Local 4 News has reached out to Trulson, Lohse, Dyer and Carter for statements and we will bring them to you when they become available.
The next Committee of the Whole meeting takes place on Tuesday, February 21 at Silvis City Hall, 121 11th Street.