BRONAUGH -- Mayor Michael "Mike" Millman and Alderman Andy Brannan have resigned in a dispute with some townspeople and other members of the Bronaugh Board of Aldermen over Millman's and Brannan's cleanup campaign.
"Andy and I read our letters of resignation at the aldermen's Monday night meeting," Millman said Thursday. "The board will have to appoint a new mayor, who will appoint another councilman.
"I was a write-in when Sherry Brown didn't run for re-election last April. The town has gone downhill from when I grew up here. I said, 'This is what I want to do. If you don't want to do this, don't swear me in.'"
Unanimously backed by the board at first, Millman said, he proceeded vigorously to enforce the town's cleanup ordinances, posting red tags at properties where yards and vacant lots needed mowing, having them mowed when the deadlines passed, ordering trash and junk removed and billing the owners.
"We were taken to court in Nevada by one of the residents," said Millman, a Bronaugh native who returned two years ago to operate his military window and door glazing company, Millman & Associates.
"The rest of the council decided they did not want to proceed," he said. "Our city attorney, Brandon Fisher of Nevada, has not officially quit, but his intention is no longer to represent the city."
Alderman Harry Pitts, whom Millman appointed when Steve Hoye resigned earlier this year, said Thursday night that Millman's initiative was costing more than this Southwest Vernon County town of 250 people could afford.
"A little town like Bronaugh can't spend money like water," said Pitts, who serves on the board with his sister Nancy and Terry Fleener. "The first thing you know, we won't have anything.
"I thought they were getting carried away," he said, adding that a contractor Millman had hired billed the town for $4,000.
Pitts said the panel will review its options for appointing a mayor and filling other vacancies at its Nov. 8 meeting.
Millman said Nancy Pitts and Fleener "were in favor of this until I appointed Harry to replace Steve.
"When we had the fall festival, 20 people came up and said how proud they were and to keep it up," he said. "Andy and I are very discouraged. It would be a shame for Bronaugh to turn into another Richards."