- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 31, 2016

MOUNT UNION, Iowa (AP) - A small Henry County city has taken its first step toward ceasing to exist as a city.

Mount Union City Council voted 4-0 Monday to pass a resolution of intent to discontinue functioning as a city, The Hawk Eye (https://bit.ly/280FceS ) reported.

A petition Mayor John Marek received several weeks ago had 12 signatures out of about 80 registered voters in the city.

“Right now, the majority of the people in Mount Union are for the unincorporation,” he said.

Citizens weren’t allowed to speak about discontinuing at Monday’s council meeting, but public comment was open at the start in order to pass a budget amendment.

Former Mayor Dan Johnson began a prepared speech about the unincorporation, but Marek cut him off. Two deputies escorted Johnson from the room shortly after for being “disorderly and disruptive.”

Mount Union resident Deanna Pfeiffer questioned why community members couldn’t raise their concerns.

“If everyone here is voted in by the people of Mount Union, why can’t the people talk?” she said.

Resident sitting on folding chairs in front of the council tables continued to call out questions during the meeting.

The city will now work with Henry County to figure out how it would rid itself of debts and assets before holding a public hearing that allows citizens to speak and submit written comments. The council will then pass another resolution, and citizens can call for a special election.

The city would also have to pay off its outstanding debts and sell all city property before officially unincorporating.

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Information from: The Hawk Eye, https://www.thehawkeye.com

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC.

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