Interim Deadwood mayor redistributes departmental liaison appointments

November 10, 2018

DEADWOOD — Interim Deadwood Mayor David Ruth, Jr. said Wednesday he would run for mayor in the April 2019 election, and Monday he redistributed the departmental liaison appointments left vacant with the passing of former Mayor Chuck Turbiville.

New appointments are as follows: David Ruth, Jr. - historic preservation, parks, recreation, and public works, chamber of commerce rep; Sharon Martinisko — trolley, library, Council of Local Governments rep, public buildings and safety; Gary Todd - police and fire; commission president; Charlie Struble — finance, Deadwood History, Inc. board member, planning and zoning.

Quentin Riggins, Deadwood city attorney, clarified protocol on the commission vacancies, clearing up discussion held at a special meeting Oct. 24, when the commission elected Ruth interim mayor to fill the vacancy left by Turbiville’s death Oct. 20. Ruth’s commission seat was left vacant.

“I just wanted to clear up the discussion we had at the special meeting with (Commissioner) Gary (Todd),” Riggins said. “He was asking a question about Dave’s term as a council member, as well as his term as interim mayor. I did not realize that those two positions were not up for re-election at the same time. So that is different than what you and I were discussing. What would happen is, Dave would have a choice whether to run for the full term as mayor. If he’s elected mayor, he’d be holding two seats. Then there would need to be a replacement named for Dave’s council member seat.”

Commissioner Sharon Martinisko asked if that position would be appointed or if it would require an election.

Riggins said there is one year left on Ruth’s term.

“So, the mayor would appoint the position?” asked Todd.

Riggins said yes.

“If Dave runs (for mayor) and doesn’t win, he would retain his commission seat,” he added.

In regard to the fifth commission seat, vacated by Ruth moving into the role of interim mayor, Deadwood ordinance does not specify what happens next.

“Deadwood ordinances are silent with respect to replacing a commission after someone has ascended to the role of interim mayor,” Riggins said previously. “By my interpretation of the ordinance, the seat would go unfilled until the next municipal election.”

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