By Conrad Dudderar
One Yukon City Council member took strong exception to comments made by a fellow council member after the recent city council election.
“There’s someone on our council who feels we rubber stamp, we don’t ask questions, we’re the good ole’ boy system, and we’re happy with the status quo,” Mayor Shelli Selby said near the end of the Feb. 21st council meeting.
Selby said it is the “people’s responsibility” to hold their city council members responsible and ensure they are doing their jobs.
“Good ole’ boy, status quo? I disagree,” said Selby, who represents Ward 2 on the five-member council.
Although Selby didn’t use his name in her comments, she was referring to Vice Mayor Jeff Wootton – the at-large council member.
The Yukon native soundly defeated two challengers to win the Feb. 14th Yukon City Council at-large election outright, without the need for an April runoff.
Referring to the strong support he received at the ballot box, Wootton said it “just shows that the people of Yukon want a council that asks questions and will not be a rubber stamp.”
Wootton was favored across all nine polling places, earning 52.9% of all votes cast.
In his election night statement, Wootton added that the “people of Yukon are clearly ready to move on from the status quo and good ole’ boy system. They are ready to leave the old way of doing business behind for good. Tonight’s vote clearly demonstrates that.”
Now Yukon’s vice mayor, Wootton received 1,418 votes in the recent at-large election. Rick Cacini finished a distant second with 659 votes and Tim Peters rounded out the field with 602 votes.
Wootton is a Yukon Public Schools’ geography teacher. The Yukon High School graduate was elected in 2019 to his first term as Yukon’s at-large council member.
“I’ll continue to be committed to asking questions and holding city leadership and the council accountable,” Wootton said.
Mayor Selby said she is “actively fighting daily” for federal funding, including a share Canadian County’s ARPA (American Rescue Plan Act) stimulus award.
She pointed out she attends Association of Central Oklahoma Governments (ACOG) meetings looking for grants to help the City of Yukon.
“I ask my questions when I get my (council) packets so I can work through those questions I have before we come here,” she said at Tuesday night’s council meeting.
“I serve on every committee we have – except for (Ward 3 Council Member) Donna Yanda and Rick Cacini, who isn’t even on our council.”
Some 14,636 registered voters across the City of Yukon were eligible to cast ballots in the Feb. 14th at-large council election. Voter turnout was 18.3%.
As the winner, Wootton will start his second, four-year term on the Yukon City Council this May.
The city council will elect Yukon’s mayor and vice mayor for the next 12 months at its May 2nd meeting.
City of Yukon voters elect the five council members, four who represent wards and the fifth who serves at-large. The council itself chooses the mayor and vice mayor annually.
Other council members are Aric Gilliland, Ward 4; and Rodney Zimmerman, Ward 1.