Hancock Mayor John Haeussler is stepping down.
Mayor Haeussler announced his resignation due to health reasons at the city council’s regular meeting Wednesday.
He has served as a member of the council for a total of six years, in addition to work on several city commissions, including cemetery and recreation.
He also spearheaded a project of compiling stories of local historical figures into a single book as part of Hancock’s Sesquicentennial celebration.
During the meeting, an emotional Haeussler expressed his gratitude for the people of Hancock and for his fellow council members.
Several of the residents in attendance, including former city manager Glenn Anderson, shared their fondness and appreciation for what Haeussler has brought to the city.
Haeussler said he has experienced several heart attacks over the past month and complications from medications associated with his treatment.
The mayor has undergone multiple surgeries, including the day prior to the meeting, but that wasn’t going to stop him from appearing in person to give his resignation.
“I knew I had tremendous support all the years from my friends and family. I knew a lot of them would be here tonight, and it’s just not my style to mail it in. I wanted to be here to thank everyone in person and let all my friends here know that I literally am only a phone call away and as my health improves, I’m happy to help out in any way I can,” said Haeussler. “And I wanted to let everyone know that I’m okay. I wanted people to see me physically. I took the stairs, not the elevator. I’m ready to tackle my health problems and I’m going to be here for a long time, God willing, so I wanted to let people see me and know that I’m going to get through this and I appreciate how much they’ve meant to me and will continue to mean to me.”
Mayor Pro Tem Paul LaBine was selected by the council to succeed Haeussler as mayor until their annual organizational meeting in November. Councilmember Will Lytle was chosen as the new Mayor Pro Tem.
LaBine said the city will advertise to fill the vacant seat on the council and plan to appoint one of the applicants to the At Large position at their July meeting.
In other business, the City of Hancock has their 2019-2020 budget in place.
The city council approved the proposed budget at their regular meeting Wednesday following a public hearing.
The council also set the millage rates for 2019 at 13.3731 for the City Millage, 0.7777 for the Fire Millage, and 0.80 for the Recreation Millage.