Ogdensburg City Councilor ResignsPosted: Updated:
Ogdensburg City Councilor Shawn Shaver has resigned saying, "The state of Ogdensburg politics has become poisoned and sterile."
His resignation comes two weeks after city council voted to open an investigation into his residency.
When Shaver was elected to the post in 2017, he lived on New York Avenue. He recently sold that property.
City councilors are required to live within city boundaries.
On Monday, he sent the city a resignation letter, which reads in part:
"Though the United States Postal office considers me a resident, a couple of people on this Council have decided that I am not, due to owning other properties inside and outside the city. The city Charter seems to be quite vague on what constitutes residency, so my colleagues are interpreting the language in a fashion that would attempt to force me off the council."
His resignation is effective immediately.
7 News has tried to reach out to Shaver. We'll update this story if we hear from him.
The following is Shaver's full letter:
"To the Citizens of Ogdensburg, Our Mayor, and Council Members
Over a year ago, I decided to give back to the community by running for, and winning a seat on the Ogdensburg City Council. My main motivations for this were to try and make a positive impact for the people of Ogdensburg, and to bring the voters back in to the process of running the local government. Instead of sitting on the porch and complaining about the state of our municipality, I decided to continue a life of public service at the policy level.
I quickly realized that trying to change the status quo was considered hostile by existing participants in our municipality. The state of Ogdensburg politics has become poisoned and sterile. Locals are leaving in order to escape the problems that are not being addressed by those in power. I understand that things cannot change overnight, but with infighting and the lack of civil discord, I feel like I am not being allowed to serve the people I wish to help. Government is supposed to be by the people, for the people. Sadly even on a local level this is no longer true.
As you know, the question of my residency has currently come into question. Though the United States Postal office considers me a resident, a couple of people on this Council have decided that I am not, due to owning other properties inside and outside the city. The city Charter seems to be quite vague on what constitutes residency, so my colleagues are interpreting the language in a fashion that would attempt to force me off the council. I believe they are using this in order to remove a voice of opposition. If I choose to stay on and fight this accusation, the outcome of that fight will have a negative impact
even if I am not asked to step down. In order for a group of citizens to help manage an extremely complicated system, there must be the respect of like-minded people working together for the betterment of said system. I sadly do not see that here and will not participate in a fight where Tax payer’s money goes to waste in a time when our tax base is precarious at best. With that being said, I am sadly tendering my resignation to the Ogdensburg City Council effective 2/25/19.
Shawn R. Shaver"