On Wednesday night, Bloomington’s city council chose Jim Sims as its new president for 2021 and Sue Sgambelluri as its vice president.
It’s a requirement under state law that the council selects a president and vice president from among its members at the first meeting of the year. Sims served as vice president in 2020.
During the meeting, which was held by video-conference due to the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, Sims took the virtual gavel from Steve Volan, who served as president during 2020. Volan presided over Wednesday’s meeting up to the point of the officer elections.
Earlier in the day on Wednesday, rioters who supported U.S. President Donald Trump, despite his election loss, had stormed into the Capitol on the day when Congress was supposed to certify the 2020 Electoral College votes.
The transition between city council presidents was peaceful. Said Sims, “This is a transition of leadership, not a transfer of power.”
Sims is one of three at-large representatives on the nine-member council, which is the legislative branch of the city government. The other six councilmembers represent geographic districts of the city. Sgambelluri represents District 2, which covers the northwest side of town.
The other officer chosen on Wednesday was Matt Flaherty as parliamentarian. Though it’s not required for city councils in Indiana to choose a parliamentarian, it’s written into Bloomington’s local law. Like Sims, Flaherty is an at-large representative, elected by voters of the whole city. Last year, Isabel Piedmont-Smith served as parliamentarian.
The vote on the new officers was unanimous.
Flaherty and Sgambelluri are two of the four councilmembers who were first elected in 2019, and now have one year of city council service behind them.
In August of 2017, the Democratic Party caucused Sims into the seat left vacant by Timothy Mayer’s resignation. So Sims now has three and a half years of experience serving on the council. Continue reading “New Bloomington city council president Jim Sims: “This is a transition of leadership, not a transfer of power.””