DOVER — Thanks to a provision of Ohio’s revised code, Mayor Richard Homrighausen will continue to receive his full salary for the duration of his suspension.
The mayor of Dover earns $100,542.48 a year or $3,867.02 every two weeks, according to auditor Nicole Stoldt.
On Wednesday, Dover officials were told that Homrighausen had been suspended from his post by a special commission appointed by Ohio Supreme Court Justice Maureen O’Connor.
After:Richard Homrighausen suspended as mayor of Dover, says he is not guilty
After:Three retired judges appointed to consider suspending Dover Mayor Richard Homrighausen
The mayor had been indicted in March by a Tuscarawas County grand jury on multiple counts, including theft from office, unlawful interest in a public contract and six counts of filing incomplete, false and fraudulent statements.
The Special Commission determined that “the alleged conduct underlying the performance by Homrighausen of the duties of his office as set forth in the indictment and the documents and exhibits provided by the Chief Justice, and covered by the accusations, harm the rights and interests of the public.”
The commission, made up of three retired judges, issued a preliminary decision suspending the mayor. Homrighausen did not dispute this, so the commission’s decision became final.
A jury trial in Homrighausen’s criminal case is scheduled for Sept. 20 before Tuscarawas County Common Pleas Judge Elizabeth Lehigh Thomakos.
After:A judge will accept applications for acting mayor of Dover
Tuscarawas County Probate Judge Adam Wilgus has the responsibility of appointing an interim mayor until the charges against Homrighausen are resolved.
Wilgus is accepting applications for the position until 4 p.m. Tuesday. A committee of Dover residents will review all applicants’ resumes and cover letters and recommend two of the applicants to the judge. Wilgus will interview these two and appoint an interim mayor.
Ohio’s revised code 3.16 requires Homrighausen and the acting mayor to receive the same rate of pay for the duration of the suspension.
“The suspended public official nevertheless retains the title of holder of this function for the duration of the suspension and continues to receive the compensation that he is entitled to receive for the exercise of this function for the duration of the suspension, until the public official pleads guilty or is found guilty of any crime with which the public official is charged, or until one of the conditions in clause (C)(4)(a), (b) or (c) of this section to occur,” the code reads.
It continues, “An Acting Officer appointed under Division (E)(2) of this Section or an Acting Alternate appointed under Division (E)(3) or (4) of this Section shall be certified to the board of elections and the secretary of state by the county central committee, probate judge of the court of common pleas, or the board of commissioners of the county who made the appointment. acting replacement so certified shall have all the rights, powers and responsibilities of , and shall be entitled to the same rate of remuneration as the suspended public official.”
The Ohio Revised Code also permits a political subdivision to bring a civil action in the courts to recover from any former public official “the amount of compensation paid to such former public official pursuant to this section commencing from the date of the former public official’s suspension until the date the former public official pleads guilty or is found guilty of a crime with which the former public official has been charged.”
Council Speaker Shane Gunnoe said on Thursday he would run for interim mayor.
“After consultation with members of council, members of the city administration, other elected officials in the City of Dover and some thoughts and conversations with my family, I intend to submit my candidacy,” he said. -he declares. “I believe there is a very strong consensus of support within the city government for my candidacy to become acting mayor.
“I’m doing it because, quite honestly, it’s a very temporary role. We need someone who has the experience to be up and running.
“Dover has a lot of problems, both legally and obviously we have employee negotiations, we have some big contracts that could potentially happen. The concern of many people in city government is that we need someone ‘one who can start, who already knows these issues and it won’t take long to start acting on these things.’
Gunnoe said a backlog was building up in the mayor’s office.
“The pile is growing every day,” he said.