Mayor Declares Open Door Policy, Oversees First Council Meeting

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By Tammy Moore Teague
Newly appointed Mayor Mike Gipson presided over his first city council meeting on Thursday night. He opened and closed the meeting with the same declaration, “my door is always open.” Then, added that he was grateful to the city employees and all of their efforts.

Mansfield’s Treasurer/Recorder, Becky Walker commented that the city is on the right track. This after months of turmoil within the municipality. The city’s looming issues have included the deteriorating water treatment plant, mayoral and council changes. “Things are going good and we want to keep it that way,” stated Gipson.

He laid out plans regarding upcoming events for both fundraising and community involvement. Those include a 5k run at the Fourth of July Celebration and a children’s age 12 and under fishing derby. The 5k would benefit the Mansfield Volunteer Fire Department, who also hosts the annual celebration. The fishing derby would bring the community out to City Lake Park and involve the youth. Lastly, he looked to the future and discussed plans of offering businesses and organizations sponsorships for Christmas displays at the city park.

Mansfield’s City Attorney, Matt Ketcham, reported meeting with the new mayor and detailing his duties. “We had a great meeting,” Ketcham said. “He is a great champion for the city for the next eight months, and I believe he has a true open door policy.” He went on briefly explaining to the council the mayor’s role and day to day duties. “This government mirrors the state government, like the state government mirrors the federal government,” adding that the city council functions like Congress. In sum, Ketcham said, Gipson is to oversee all the divisions to ensure they are all working together like they should.

The progress being made is likewise evident within the community. Resident, Ronnie Beran reported to the mayor and council that issues he had with overflowing ditches had been resolved. As the city looks to continue its progression, the council, the citizens and the mayor all are working together towards that goal. “We want to continue being positive.” said Gipson.

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