The Mark Furrer era is drawing to a close in Sunset Hills — and none too soon.
Furrer was elected mayor as a write-in candidate in 2014, touting his victory as some kind of grass-roots win for residents. However, the truth is that Furrer paid a political consultant, Show-Me Victories, $3,671.92 to assist with his campaign.
It would be an understatement to say that Furrer’s tenure as mayor has been disastrous for Sunset Hills.
While Furrer fancied himself as a “change agent” for the city, his polarizing effect on the Board of Aldermen has resulted in nearly two years of turmoil and resulting bad publicity for the city.
His unprofessionalism in office has been well-documented by this newspaper, as he has publicly bullied aldermen, threatened them with legal action in a closed session if they didn’t do what he wanted and, ironically, had the nerve to tell them that they were the embarrassment to the city.
Amazingly, Furrer continues to have his defenders and supporters.
We’ll be curious to see how they defend Furrer’s actions at the Feb. 23 Board of Aldermen meeting, as we believe he outdid himself with his over-the-top antics.
The board discussed whether members should be allowed to vote by video, eventually voting 5-3 to allow aldermen to vote through FaceTime, the iPhone video-calling app.
Because of a new work commitment that takes him to Wisconsin during the week, Ward 3 Alderman Keith Kostial has attended most meetings over the last few months by FaceTime.
Early on, Furrer noted that City Attorney Robert E. Jones believes it is legal for Kostial to attend meetings by FaceTime. State law does not define videoconferencing, so Ward 4 Alderman Pat Fribis questioned whether the app counts as a video, citing recommended guidelines from Missouri Municipal League attorney Joseph Lauber of Lee’s Summit.
Furrer’s response was simply unbelievable, as the mayor threw Fribis’ research from the Municipal League over the dais and onto the floor.
The city’s next mayor, whether it be Fribis, Larry Chorosevic, Nathan Lipe or Gregory Nelson, will have plenty of work ahead to undo the damage Furrer has done to the city’s good name.
Needless to say, any of the four candidates would be a welcome sight in the mayoral seat on the dais.
Without a doubt, Furrer’s tenure as mayor has been an unmitigated disaster for Sunset Hills and its citizens.