Councilman resigns because of health issues


“We learn to say the good-byes that must be said; to dismantle the structure of living we’ve outgrown, to move on the message of autumn… Shedding the old in order to welcome the new. Hope for a new season repining inside us, hope for a harvest of new growth, hope in God, who makes all things new.”

That was how Delaware’s Third Ward Councilman Joe DiGenova began his letter of resignation from City Council that was submitted at Monday night’s meeting. DiGenova was absent from the meeting, but Mayor Carolyn Kay Riggle read the letter aloud with emotion at the meeting.

“It seems like only yesterday I was appointed to on City Council. It became what became, initially, a wonderful experience for me after 25.5 years. But it is with regret and due to my health, that I, Joseph J. DiGenova, tender my resignation effective April 30, 2017,” he said in his letter.

“I want to take this closing opportunity to thank you, (council), and staff an all the associates who have provided me the opportunity to be a part of the City of Delaware Family.”

Residents of the Third Ward that have any concerns or concerns that need addressed can reach out to the Council’s at-large council members: George Hellinger, Vice Mayor Kent Shafer and Riggle.

The mayor said DiGenova has a “strong voice,” but a “soft heart.”

“He’s going to be sorely missed,” she said.

In other business, Council:

• Approved a resolution to support the sister city visit to Sakata, Japan. Delaware will send a delegation to the city in April to establish a sister city relationship. The resolution would designate the trip as a public purpose and allow funds budgeted funds to pay costs for the delegation.

Sakata officials will pay for meals, lodging and travel expenses except for the airfare, City Manager Tom Homan said. Council voted 4-1-1 with Hellinger casting the dissenting vote and Riggle abstaining. Riggle is a member of the delegation.

• Established a time for public comment on the city’s Bike Plan 2025 at 7:15 p.m. April 10.

• Established a time for a public hearing for the amendment of codified ordinance section 1168.07, which would clarify the uses of the tree bank fund.

• Approved a resolution to install no parking zones along Lexington Boulevard and Buehler Drive.

• Approved legislation to allow the Greenswell Foundation to sell alcohol during the New Moon Half & Quarter Marathon event on May 27.


By Brandon Klein

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Gazette reporter Brandon Klein can be reached by email or on Twitter at @brandoneklein.

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