Thursday, December 16, 2010

Boise Bids Bisterfeldt Adieu

Posted By on Thu, Dec 16, 2010 at 2:08 PM

Vern Bisterfeldt
  • Vern Bisterfeldt
Lauren McLean was officially announced as the newest member of the Boise City Council, filling a vacant seat left by Council Member Vern Bisterfeldt, who is leaving to take his new role as Ada County commissioner.

In a special session of the Boise City Council, Mayor Dave Bieter announced McLean as his official nominee.

“I used to think it would be really cool to appoint a council member,” sighed Bieter, citing the 53 applicants for the job. “Now, I’d just as soon not do it.”

Bieter and the Council then heaped praise on McLean, formerly with the Boise Parks Commission and current veteran of the city Planning and Zoning Commission. Overheard prior to the proceedings: her husband helped their two kids “get the wiggles out” before the not-so-kid friendly meeting.

“She’s been dedicated to the city since she got off the … plane, got off the car—whatever mode of transportation,” said Bieter. “I feel really good about this choice and I hope you feel the same.”

Bisterfeldt seemed jovial overall, and welcomed the woman replacing him.

“If I don’t like it over there, how do I get back?” Bisterfeldt asked the mayor to much chuckling. But he endorsed McLean as the next council member. “I’ve known her for awhile, and I think the choice is a good one. They tell me I can’t vote for you, but I welcome you,” he said.

The other council members opined words of wisdom, but cautioned trying to fill Vern’s shoes.

“This is going to be a tough seat to fill,” Council Member David Eberle cautioned “My only advice is: Don’t make any motions to remove religious monuments.”

Ultimately, the Council voted unanimously to approve McLean's appointment.

“Thank you so much, this is such an honor,” McLean said. “When I think about where my kids will be in 10 years, I want this to be a place that, after they go out and discover the world, they’ll want to come back”

Council President Maryanne Jordan mentioned a potential hurdle for the newly minted council member: she has to run for a proper election in nine months, and then again two years after that, when Bisterfeldt’s term will expire.

On whether or not appointees usually pick up their seat in elections, Bieter said, “Well that’s a good question. Both Alan Shealy and Maryanne Jordan were appointed, so they both did that. I’d say probably it’s more common than not."

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