What happens at Cape May City Council reorganization meetings? Every January 1st, unless prearranged by City Council, the City of Cape May holds a reorganization meeting. Newly elected officials are sworn in and the City gets down to business.
For the past year, at least since the pandemic took hold, Cape May City Council meetings have been virtual. The New Year’s Day meeting was held in person at City Hall. The attendance was limited to 24 people. The meeting agenda is posted on the City’s website.
Though thousands of votes were cast in the November election–a little over 100 viewers logged into the meeting streamed live.
The meeting is presided initially over by the City Clerk. The incumbent Council members, Mullock, Sheehan, and Meier sat separated by plexiglass dividers.
Without fanfare, Zack Mullock resigned his seat from City Council and was sworn in as the City’s new mayor. Retired Judge Raymond Batten administered the oath of office. Mayor affirms: “I will not take any special privileges not afforded to regular citizens of the City of Cape May.”
City Councilman Chris Bezaire was sworn in by City Clerk Erin C. Burke. With Mullock’s council seat now vacant, (he can’t hold both positions) Council nominates and unanimously approves Lorraine Baldwin to fill the expired term of the Mayor’s vacant seat.
What happens at Cape May City Council
Ms. Baldwin is sworn into her council and the nomination of Deputy Mayor Stacy Sheehan takes place. Council is now seated and can get down to business. Again, the agenda is previously arranged and various appointments follow.
Cape May gets a new City Solicitor. The surfing, guitar-playing frontman for the Bastard Sons of Captain Mey Chris Gillin-Schwartz is appointed. He is the one who writes the where-as and where-for.
Cape May also appointed Mike Voll as the new Manager of the city. He replaces Jerry Inderwies who resigned before the new administration took office. “You have the keys to the city,” declared Councilman Shaine Meier, referring to Voll.
A laundry list of business takes place and bills are paid. Each item is voted upon either individually or by group (consent agenda.)
One of the items not unanimous was the elimination of the Cape May Star and Wave as the official paper of record. Explained as a move to get more online exposure and not personal by Councilman Bezaire, the Press of Atlantic City, and the Cape May County Herald, were appointed papers of record.
A newspaper is used to publish public or legal notices, thus serving as a newspaper of public record. Not since the Mahaney administration had the Star and Wave been dismissed. It will certainly conjure up all sorts of speculation as to why the council made this move.
The Cape May Sentinel used the longest paragraph in a recent post, to explain possible motives for dismissing the Star and Wave.
Moving forward the Council pledges to continue to post meeting agendas and packets to the city website. You can find them by clicking here.
We offer this post in the interest of those who care about what happens at City Council meetings. I am curious about how many people really follow meetings.