Monica Walk of Fond du Lac County Council resigns due to attendance rule
FOND DU LAC – Monica Walk, a member of the Fond du Lac County Board of Directors, has resigned, citing health reasons and the requirement to attend council meetings in person.
In her resignation letter, dated Tuesday, Walk said she had done “deeply detailed and thoughtful committee work” via virtual online participation, but supervisors do not have the same option for full board meetings. county administration board since the county’s COVID-19 emergency rules ended in May.
“Although the county council leadership approved the ability of supervisors to attend committee meetings through participation in the virtual platform, it did not support the same participation in the virtual platform for monthly county council meetings, âWalk wrote. “I cannot in good conscience fulfill only half of the duties assigned to my elected position. Therefore, I am resigning my position as District 25 Supervisor.”
Walk resigned from her position as a member of the Fond du Lac School Board to run unopposed for County Council in April 2020. Most recently, she served on the County Social Service Committee and related Social Service Council.
County board chairman Martin Farrell said on Thursday that discussions took place at an Oct. 4 committee committee meeting on changing the rules for attending meetings, that Walk and another member of the board, Brian Kolstad, argued.
âShe and others wanted to change the rules, and it was a close call, but the majority of supervisors wanted to continue to demand in-person presence,â Farrell said.
The county board is expected to approve a cleaned-up version of its attendance rules and procedures at its October 19 meeting.
The county has allowed up to two members to attend committee meetings virtually for decades, first by phone and then through virtual meetings, Farrell said. It is up to each committee chairperson to decide which members can virtually attend if others so request.
Unlike committees, which have fewer members, county council meetings involve 25 members and many employees, so it would be difficult to decide who could and could not attend meetings virtually if the same rules applied to the whole board, Farrell said.
“It’s easier to have a clear rule so that everyone is held at the same level,” he said. “The problem I see with changing the rule is that it could open up areas for litigation and allegations of favoritism.”
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He added that the board has maintained “excellent attendance throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and has never lacked a quorum.”
Walk declined The Reporter ‘s request for an interview, saying she had no more comments beyond what she wrote in her resignation letter.
The county is looking for candidates to fill Walk’s unexpired tenure, which runs until April 19. Applicants must be U.S. citizens, 18 years of age or older, and live in District 25, which includes wards 5 and 6 in the Town of Fond du Lac and Ward 4 in the City of Fond du Lac. A map is available on the county website or at the county clerk’s office.
Resumes and cover letters that include a name, address and phone number can be mailed to: Fond du Lac County Clerk, PO Box 1557, Fond du Lac, WI 54936 or by email to Lisa .freiberg @ fdlco.wi.gov.
A review of applications will begin on October 29 and will continue until the position is filled. More information is available by contacting the clerk at 920-929-3000.
Contact Sharon Roznik at 920-907-7936 or [email protected] Follow her on Facebook at facebook.com/reporterroz.