BELDING — With Belding City Council member Roger Wills’ empty seat to his left, Belding Mayor Ron Gunderson read a prepared statement to begin Monday night’s city council meeting announcing the official resignation of Wills from the council.
“Yesterday, Mr. Wills tendered his resignation which became effective at this evening’s city council meeting,” Gunderson said. “While I am disappointed with his decision, I respect his wishes. That being said, I would like to officially thank Roger Wills for his 11 years of service on city council. Roger has been a valuable asset to this community and his talent and expertise will be sorely missed. I wish Roger and his wife Nancy all the best.”
Wills was in his eleventh year on the council and previously served as Mayor of Belding.
In his letter of resignation, Wills said he only wishes the best for the people of Belding.
“It has been a privilege serving the people of Belding for the past 11 years on its city council,” his letter read. “At this time I am resigning my position on the Belding City Council. I wish for only the best to the people of Belding.”
Wills did not provide a reason for his resignation and did not return several phone calls by the Daily News Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning.
The vacancy on the council must be filled within 30 days. Letters of qualification must be submitted to the council by March 8.
The council will interview potential candidates at a special council meeting on March 13. City council will then appoint the new council member during the city council meeting on March 20.
The council member appointed will serve the remainder of Wills’ term, which ends in November of 2015.
Wills began his term as mayor in July of 2009 when former mayor Shane Husted resigned.
Wills, who previously served as mayor pro tem, automatically replaced Husted as mayor in accordance with Belding’s city charter.
On Nov. 8, 2011, Wills was reelected to the council in the general election but did not receive support for nomination to continue as mayor. The council selected Ron Gunderson as the city’s new mayor on Nov. 15.
Wills is retired after teaching science for Belding Area Schools for 42 years.
Council member Mike Scheid said he will miss working with Wills.
“He’s going to be sadly missed here, he really is,” Scheid said. “Roger is a good man. He had the best of the city at heart and really, that’s what you look for in a council member. It’s been a pleasure to serve with him, but sometimes change is inevitable.”