Scott Basinger, solicitor for the Village of Pandora, swears in Jeremy Liechty as Pandora's new mayor. Liechty replaces John Schlumbohm, who resigned the position to assume his new role as a member of the Putnam County Board of Commissioners - Putnam Sentinel
Scott Basinger, solicitor for the Village of Pandora, swears in Jeremy Liechty as Pandora's new mayor. Liechty replaces John Schlumbohm, who resigned the position to assume his new role as a member of the Putnam County Board of Commissioners. (Putnam Sentinel/Mark Hamilton)

PANDORA — An end of an era in the village has come with the resignation of Mayor John Schlumbohm.

During the last meeting of the year on Tuesday, Dec. 11, Schlumbohm submitted his resignation as mayor effective immediately. He was sworn as a new Putnam County Commissioner Monday. After his resignation was accepted, Village Solicitor Scott Basinger sworn-in Council President Jeremy Liechty as the new mayor.

Schlumbohm wrote it has definitely been a pleasure to serve the residents for the past 25 years - first as councilman, and then as mayor since August 2005. He wrote he had the privilege of working with many dedicated council persons along with several different employees of the village and opportunities to meet countless outstanding people.

“The residents of Pandora and co-workers have shown me heart felt compassion and sympathy during my times of struggle over the last several years,” he said.

Many have congratulated him on “a job well done,” but Schlumbohm wrote that the complements should be shed upon his co-workers, “as without the dedication, fantastic spirit, and work ethic of my co-workers, the job of mayor would be nearly impossible.”

“I will most definitely miss working with all of you, however, I will never forget what a wonderful and dedicated team you all have been to work with and by the way, my cell phone will always be on.”

Schlumbohm said it has been a very enjoyable experience, not a drag at all with very few complaints from residents. He also praised the current village council for being fiscally responsible. He noted that is not a reflection on past councils, but times have changed over the years that have warranted a stricter line with spending.

Schlumbohm will miss the people he worked with in the village and had high praise for the current Village Administrator Rick Morrison and Fiscal Officer Kim Reese but is looking forward to his time as commissioner. The village will remain in good hands.

“I have all the faith in the world in Jeremy. He will do fantastic job as mayor,” Schlumbohm said.

Now that Liechty has assumed the duties of mayor, his position on council will need to be replaced to complete his term which expires at the end of 2021. Rick Fricke, a former member of council, has expressed an interest in the position. Any resident of the village interested in serving on council is urged to contact Liechty or the village office.

Liechty said he will continue meeting with Morrison and Reese on the weeks when there is no council meeting. They along with their village employees run things daily. The new mayor said they will continue with the lift station project in 2019 as well as trying to secure funding for a new water tower. He also would like to see more improvements to the park. He will continue Schlumbohm’s tradition of attending the county mayor’s association which he said can be a valuable source of information.

Liechty said he is looking forward to seeing Pandora prosper and grow.

“We’re a village just like everybody else that wants to do what’s best for the community,” Liechty said. “John is going to be a hard mayor to replace. He will be a great commissioner for the county.”

In other business, council:

• approved a resolution retaining Basinger as the village solicitor at the same salary.

• authorized Reese to pay all village bills prior to Dec. 31, 2018 and any unforeseen expenses.

• reviewed an agreement with the Riley Township Trustees regarding the fire contact and returned it to them for their review.

The next regular meeting of the Pandora Village Council is scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 8, at 7:30 p.m. in the village offices.