McCabe, Hershey draw final applause |

McCabe, Hershey draw final applause

Janet Urquhart
Aspen Times Staff Writer

Although they were ousted by voters after one term in office, departing City Councilmen Tom McCabe and Tony Hershey were singled out for praise repeatedly during their final deliberations at the council table Monday.

And, both men earned a standing ovation from observers in the audience after proclamations commending their work and dedication were read aloud. Then, newly elected council members Rachel Richards and Torre took the oath of office alongside Mayor Helen Klanderud, who was re-elected last month, and took their seats at the table to finish the night’s business.

“Thank you, it has been a pleasure,” McCabe said. “Serving on City Council is, I suppose, in a word, challenging, but it is also real rewarding.”

“I have enjoyed working with both of you,” Klanderud told her departing council colleagues. “It takes courage to stick your neck out and run for public office and to serve the public.”

McCabe handed the council a list of to-do items that he hopes his successors will work to achieve and ticked off 10 goals he had when he took office four years ago – things like putting a proposed rail system before voters and establishing a valleywide transportation district.

“All 10 of them have been accomplished to one degree or another,” he said.

Formation of the transportation district was “a very big accomplishment,” McCabe added. “I think we should all be proud.”

Hershey, who lost a runoff race to Torre last week, was more brief in his parting remarks. He encouraged Torre to give city manager Steve Barwick and city attorney John Worcester a ride home after late-night council meetings if he happens to drive to City Hall.

The Republican Hershey also acknowledged his supporters, Aspen’s conservative minority, and warned the council that it will have a “tough time” if all factions of the community aren’t represented in city government.

“I’m going to miss working with you guys, but I’ve got other stuff to do,” he said.

Torre and Richards thanked their supporters.

“This is an overwhelming honor,” Torre said. “I’m deeply excited about what we can accomplish.”

Richards, who served on the council for 10 years, including two as mayor before losing a close contest with Klanderud in 2001, is no stranger to elected office.

“It doesn’t feel familiar yet, but it’s nice to be back, folks,” she said.

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