During a Nov. 3 special meeting, three Belle aldermen accepted the resignation of appointed Ward 2 representative Kayla Bray before going into a closed session to discuss personnel.
According to the meeting agenda, accepting Bray’s resignation, dated Nov. 1, effective immediately, was the only item to be discussed in the open session.
The scheduled 3 p.m. meeting began at 3:06 p.m., and Bray’s resignation was accepted immediately without questions or comments. Bray was not present to explain her decision to step down.
The resignation she provided to the board said, “To whom it may concern, I am officially resigning my position as Ward 2 alderwoman effective immediately on Nov. 1, 2022.”
The board immediately voted to go into closed session for personnel.
Mayor Daryl White, Jr., said they would post the open seat, which will now see its third office holder since former alderman Sundi Jo Graham, elected in April 2022, stepped down in July when she moved away.
“(Anyone who is interested) we will post a sign up at City Hall,” White said. “We will post it to Facebook.”
White said the board will visit the list of interested parties at the Nov. 8 city meeting, which has been moved from 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. due to the elections.
The board went into a closed session at 3:13 p.m. and exited the Lonnie Feeler Memorial Building at 3:48 p.m., but declined to share any motions or votes taken. He also declined to comment on what personnel matter was discussed.
“We have 72 hours before we have to release that information,” White said. “We are going to wait 72 hours.”
According to the special meeting announcement, the board was going into closed session for personnel — a subsection of Missouri Sunshine Law that only allows for discussion to hire, fire, discipline or promote an employee. Resignations must be accepted in open session.
According to Missouri Sunshine Law Section 610.021.3, “the board may go into closed session to discuss hiring, firing, disciplining or promoting of particular employees by a public governmental body when personal information about the employee is discussed or recorded.”
“However, any vote on a final decision when taken by a public governmental body, to hire, fire, promote or discipline an employee of a public governmental body shall be made available with a record of how each member voted to the public within 72 hours of the close of the meeting where such action occurs, provided any employee so affected shall be entitled to prompt notice of such decision during the 72-hour period before such decisions are made available to the public.”
No city employee was present during the closed session. City Clerk and Recorder of Records Frankie Hicks was also absent from the proceedings.