Oak Creek Mayor Kathy "Cargo" Rodeman talks on the phone in her office. Town employees have lodged complaints against Rodeman, prompting the Town Board to hold a special meeting last week.

file photo

Oak Creek Mayor Kathy "Cargo" Rodeman talks on the phone in her office. Town employees have lodged complaints against Rodeman, prompting the Town Board to hold a special meeting last week.

Oak Creek Mayor Cargo Rodeman resigns

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— Kathy "Cargo" Rodeman has resigned after more than four years as Oak Creek's mayor.

"I love Oak Creek more than I could possibly put into words, and I am extremely honored and humbled that the beautiful residents of our town had enough confidence and belief in me to elect me three times," Rodeman wrote in her letter of resignation. "The events of the last several weeks have confused and saddened me to a point I have never before experienced."

Rodeman has been under fire since Sept. 25, when the Oak Creek Town Board met in secret session to hear complaints by town employees against the mayor. Rodeman was not allowed to participate in that secret session.

The Steamboat Pilot & Today has challenged the meeting, saying it was an illegal closed session. The Colorado Open Meetings Law prevents public bodies from meeting in secret session to discuss an elected official or a member of the body. The Pilot & Today is seeking a judge's order to release the tapes of that meeting.

Rodeman's attorney, Charles Feldmann, said Monday that it became too difficult for Rodeman to do her job as mayor, and she resigned so "things could move forward in Oak Creek."

"The constant meanness just really cut her the wrong way," Feldmann said.

In her resignation letter, Rodeman said the three newest members of the Town Board have been "downright hateful to me." Board member Angie Kralj KenCairn said on Monday that Rodeman was referring to her, Dave Fisher and Tom Bleuer.

"I can take criticism, but the vicious personal attacks and ungodly attitudes from members that were my friends a few months ago, made me certain that I never wish to sit at the table with them again," Rodeman wrote.

KenCairn said Town Board members were after a better understanding and definitions of the roles of the town's staff. Some challenged Rodeman's dual roles with the town - elected mayor and contracted grant writer. Rodeman also resigned as the town's grant writer.

"Contrary to what anybody thinks, none of the new board members was calling for her resignation," KenCairn said. "I was not calling on her to cease her grant writing responsibilities. I wanted to better define the roles of the staff in Town Hall."

KenCairn said Rodeman's resignation was a surprise, and that she is nervous about the future transition.

"Now we're going to be in the situation where we don't know enough about the projects, and we're going to have to pick up the pieces," KenCairn said.

Mayor Pro-Tem J. Elliott said he was devastated when he learned of Rodeman's resignation Monday evening.

"I don't know what to say," Elliott said. "I'm going to get with her and see what we can do."

Trustee Steve "Spike" Beven said Monday was a very sad day for Oak Creek, one that he had hoped would never come.

"Cargo Rodeman was the overwhelming popularly elected mayor in three elections, and many old-timers say she was the best mayor they had in their lifetime," Beven said.

"She was one of Oak Creek's greatest assets, an inspiration to many, including myself."

Rodeman was first elected in April 2002. She also won contested races in 2004 and earlier this year.

Oak Creek Town Clerk Karen Halterman said the town would advertise for the mayor position. Both current trustees and members of the public can apply. The Town Board will appoint a replacement. If an existing trustee is chosen to become the mayor, the town will then advertise for the vacant trustee position.

- To reach Matt Stensland, call 871-4210

or e-mail mstensland@steamboatpilot.com

Comments

fifi 8 years, 2 months ago

ahhh at last bluntman speaks the truth as many of us know her. hmm so does boodog. carry on gentlemen...you have not been sucked onto the web she weaves. No one wishes her harm just go back to being another unemployed oak creek volunteer.
l

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fifi 8 years, 2 months ago

Thank GOD she was a nightmare on Main street. How many ex employees will be celebrating tonight 8-10 ?

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candylane 8 years, 2 months ago

It amazes me that hired town secretaries have more say than an elected Mayor. This is not someone who was recently elected, but someone who has 3 elections under their belt, whereas the secretaries have not been there as long. Are there any complaints about the secretaries? Have they done as much for The town of Oak Creek as the Mayor has? Why would the Town Board accepted her resignation unless they had something to hide?

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Scott Stanford 8 years, 2 months ago

Clevedave:

The Steamboat Pilot & Today has taken the position that the secert meeting was illegal and that the town must therefore give us tapes of the meeting. The Town Board has refused. Thus, we will ask a judge to order the town to give us the tapes. Obviously, should we prevail, the complaints would be made clear.

Scott Stanford Editor, Steamboat PIlot & Today (970) 871-4221 editor@steamboatpilot.com

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the_Lizard 8 years, 2 months ago

fifi Why was she a nightmare ...? just curious for your opinion

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RickBevan 8 years, 2 months ago

It really galls me that folks want to say disparaging things about an individual; but they don't have the backbone to sign their name to it. Who the hell is "fifi?" What's your real name? Have the moxie to ID yourself when you throw an opinion someone's way. Hell, perhaps that person will ask you UP FRONT what's the beef and then they'd be open to suggestion so's that they could "modify their behaviour" else, all is accomplished is a lot of bitching with no resolution! It's too bad Cargo threw in the towel, she's done a helluva lot for this burg and I'd like to see someone TOP her accomplishments. I sure will miss her. No one is perfect, so all you self righteous types look in the mirror!

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Scott Wedel 8 years, 2 months ago

Forensic accounting of the grant writer? You'll find Cargo worked a lot more hours than she billed. Or do you think Mayor is a fulltime position?

I was at the last Town Board meeting. Tom Bleuer stated it was iunworkable to have the Mayor also be a town employee which was a pretty clear request for her to resign. Gary Fisher compared Cargo to the Bush administration and the failed policies of Iraq which had to be quite offensive to Cargo as she is personally very much opposed to both. And Angie Kincairn used corporate lingo and doublespeak to suggest the grant writer position isn't needed, and that she could not support or defend Cargo while also saying she thought Cargo had done a good job on previous projects.

And in what I thought was the most remarkable bit of unreported news from the meeting, Cargo said that none of the employee complaints had yet been submitted in writing. It is my understanding that a written complaint is supposed to be the first step taken by an employee who'd like to make an complaint.

Oh well, now comes put or shut up for the new board members. Angie Kincairn said that she and other board members need to get more involved and take on more responsibility. Even though Cargo was the only board member present at the most recent Main Street project meeting with CDOT.

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candylane 8 years, 2 months ago

My question for the day is "Where are the tapes?" Does the Town Attourney or the Judge have them? Rumor has it that Angie KenCarin has them? Can you spell WATERGATE?

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bluntman 8 years, 2 months ago

candylame; what astute, relevant questions you posit. do you contribute to this forum merely to further propagate the rumor mill? your whopping 2 posts since october, 16 seem to indicate as much.

Scott_Wedel; turn up your hearing aid. nice of you to attend the board meeting in OC, but i would suggest a bit more work on your listening skills. trustee Fisher said nothing that compared Cargo to dubya. he was speaking to claims by others that Cargo was the "only one" who could aminister the current projects, and to the flawed notion that the town shouldn't change horses in midstream. the comparison between the bush administration's position and the position of some of Cargo's proponents is what was being addressed. "be fearful of the unkown and support your leader unquestioningly" is exactly what got the U.S. into the situation in Iraq, and what has gotten the town of OC into the pickle that they are in now. complicity on the part of the 4th estate has a distinct and obvious role in both situations, i would further add. it appears that you missed all of that. Cargo WAS the only town representative at the CDOT meeting held at 1 p.m. on a weekday, that much is true. you could also go one step further and state (quite factually) that the rest of the town's elected officials HAVE JOBS that precluded their attendance. of course, it certainly wouldn't be as dramatic of a claim then, would it?

the whole can of worms in OC has entirely to do with an elected official (former mayor) promoting a position (grant writer) from which they then personally benefit, and further taking on duties and responsibilities that were not allocated to this individual, such as grant administrator. (read: getting involved in everything and everyone else's business without so much as a discussion)

something comes to (my) mind about "conflict of interest", maybe there are others out there who see things in a similar light? Cargo was called upon to answer some very legitimate questions about the grant writer position (for which she has not had a contract since may, 2005, by the way) and she CHOSE to turn that into a conspiracy against her and some sort of personal vendetta on the part of (some of) the board members. the very first time she is challenged and doesn't get things unanimously HER WAY, she turns tail and runs. it really didn't take much, and THAT is what speaks volumes to her qualifications as a political leader.

the playground bully got called out by the New Kids and lost. the bully threw a tantrum, tried to play the victim, then took her toys and went running home when the spurious ploy failed. "constant meanness", my ash.

booo-hooo, somebody quick call the waaaahhh-mbulance.

i'm heading down to the bar now to imbibe in that pitcher of white Russians, yum. see ya there, ya bunch of crybabies. the first round is on me.

bluntman

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bluntman 8 years, 2 months ago

yah, boodog. 'cause they're tasty?

-or maybe-

'cause if ya bought a pitcher of 'em, ya might draw a few sods 2 or 3 to sit with ya for a while and listen to The Story...

: - )

bluntman

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bluntman 8 years, 1 month ago

supposedly, the alleged "tapes" from the executive session will be released to the public so that they may be enjoyed by a broader audience, cleve.

sounds of popcorn popping as the chairs nudge forward a bit

boodog; just goes to show that i don't know everything. or anything, for that matter. that must have been one of the "vicious personal attacks" the former mayor had referred to.

fifi; agreed, we shouldn't be sucked in by the touching, heart-rending, poignant human interest story. just the facts please, Cargo ma'am.

Ann; i think those were known as the "Zapruder" tapes. or were you just taking a quick snipe from the Grassy Knoll?

: - )

bluntman

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bluntman 8 years, 1 month ago

crazy conspiracy theories, white Russians, etc. <

ahhh... it all begins to make sense now.

bluntman

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