Abstaining from a vote is only permitted if a member feels they have a conflict of interest. Harder, the chair of the Economic Development committee and Government Reform and Efficiency committee, did not respond after an interview request was left with an assistant at his office. Later reached by text Monday, he said he was in a meeting, then failed to respond despite further attempts at a follow-up.
The council, which usually seats seven members, is currently composed of five members. When County Executive Steve Stenger resigned in April after a federal grand jury indicted him in a pay-to-play scandal, Sam Page became the county executive. His seat representing the county's 2nd district is currently open, as is the first district seat previously held by Hazel Erby. Erby resigned to join Page's administration, working on issues of diversity and inclusion.
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