Published On: Tue, Oct 27th, 2020

Drucker to fill Boca Council seat left vacant by Rodgers’ military leave

By Dale King

When Boca Raton City Councilman and Deputy Mayor Jeremy Rodgers was called to military duty in Qatar a few months ago, the U.S. Navy Reservist hope to continue his municipal service in Boca by attending council meetings via electronic hookup.

The Navy apparently scrubbed that idea. So, facing a potentially lengthy military leave, one that could last through his council tenure which ends March 31, 2021, Rodgers urged the council to choose a temporary replacement. And he suggested his wife, Amanda, could do the job.

Amanda Rodgers was one of 32 Boca citizens who answered the city’s call when councilmen last week issued a request for potential nominees to take over Rodgers’ council post – Seat C.

But when the council put the idea to a vote Tuesday night, Amanda Rodgers got a single vote, but Yvette Drucker, a community volunteer who has served on such panels as the Historical Society and Junior League of Boca Raton, got three votes.

Drucker, who had already announced plans to run for Rodgers’ seat in the March 2021 municipal election, will begin her temporary term the night of Nov. 10 – when the council meets again in full session. She may be sworn in earlier, or at the start of that session.

While the vote was split, council members were unanimous Tuesday night in thanking all 32 people for coming forward to show their willingness to serve the city. Mayor Scott Singer said he was “overwhelmed” at the number of potential nominees.

When the tally for temporary council member was taken, Singer, Andrea
O’Rourke and Monica Mayotte selected Drucker as their Number 1 choice. Andy Thomson cast the single ballot for Amanda Rodgers.

The council spent considerable time during Monday’s workshop interviewing the council hopefuls. The gang of 32 included two people who have announced planned runs for Seat C next year when Rodgers’ term expires – Drucker and former Councilwoman and Deputy Mayor Constance Scott, who yielded that seat to Rodgers when she was term-limited in 2015.

As discussion of filling the seat began at Tuesday’s meeting, Thomson suggested keeping Rodgers’ post open until the election. Mayotte and O’Rourke followed by saying citizens deserve a full panel to avoid tie votes, so they wanted the position filled.

In fact, O’Rourke said she knew of a potential applicant who had held back a proposal to the council because he feared it could be killed by a tie vote.

Mayor Singer added: “There is merit for five votes, under the county, state and federal emergencies.”  He noted that previous councils had dealt with vacancies in 2001 and 2008, among other years.

When it came to a vote, Mayotte led with Drucker, but also said she backed Brian Stenberg, Pete Martinez and attorney Spencer Siegel.

O’Rourke also opted for Drucker, along with Martinez, Siegel and Kerry Koen, a former fire chief in Boca Raton and Delray Beach.

Thomson picked Amanda Rogers, attorney Julie Vianale and Koen.

The mayor did not add any names, saying he was satisfied with the list of nominees on the floor. When it came time to cast his vote, he selected Drucker.

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