Cloutier resigns: Councilman moving to Lapeer; charter says seat goes on ballot


Bryan Cloutier’s days on the Oxford Village Council are numbered.
Last week, during council comments at the end of the meeting, he announced his intention to submit his letter of resignation due to an upcoming change of address.
“As of the end of this month, I will no longer reside in the village,” Cloutier told council.
He’s going to hang his hat in Lapeer.
“I’m moving back to my hometown,” he told this reporter.
Cloutier, who’s employed as the director of the Oxford Public Library, was appointed to council in September 2013 following the resignation of Tony Albensi, who moved to Orion Township. He was then elected to a four-year seat in November 2014.
Cloutier has since submitted his letter of resignation to the village clerk. Council must now vote to accept it. This is expected to happen at the 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 22 meeting.
Cloutier is planning to attend that meeting, “but not in an official capacity,” he told this reporter. “I’m going to try to attend the meeting (as an audience member), if they have any questions.”
According to the village charter, once council votes to accept his resignation, it has 30 days to fill the vacancy.
Whoever is appointed to the seat will serve until someone is elected to it in Nov. 8 election.
Originally, only two four-year council seats were scheduled to appear on the general election ballot. Those seats are currently occupied by Rose Bejma and Tom Kennis.
But because Cloutier’s resignation occurred early enough in the year, it appears his seat will be on the ballot as well and whoever is elected to it will serve the remainder of his term, which expires in November 2018.
The village charter states, “Any person so appointed shall hold office until the Monday following the next Village election provided such election is held no earlier than one hundred twenty (120) days from the date of appointment by the Council, and at which election the vacancy shall be filled for the balance of the term of the person whose office is so filled.”
During his time on council, Cloutier noted he attempted to “change a lot of things in the village” by “bringing a different perspective to the table.”
“It’s a time of change and change is inevitable,” he said. “Definitely there is a need for some change and I hope that you embrace that wholeheartedly and that you have a more prosperous future ahead of you. I wish you well.”
Cloutier expressed his gratitude to “everybody who supported me.”
“It’s been a long journey for me and I appreciate the opportunity to serve,” he said.
“You will be missed,” said Councilwoman Rose Bejma.
“Thanks for all your hard work,” said Councilman Tom Kennis.
Cloutier will continue to serve Oxford as the library director, a position he’s held since 2007. “Just because I’m moving outside of the village does not mean I will be leaving the Oxford Public Library,” he said.
He noted he’ll continue to attend village meetings to keep an eye on things and offer input.
“I know there’s a lot of hard work yet to be done and I would love to be part of that,” Cloutier said. “Just because I’m not going to be on council doesn’t mean I’m not going to be sitting out there in the audience. Don’t think you’re getting rid of me.”
“Certainly, if I think I need to speak up, I will,” he continued. “You all know me. I’m a very outspoken person. I’m certainly not going to be the quiet person sitting out there, so you might wish I was still sitting here.”
Cloutier told his fellow council members he’s willing to continue to serve as the village’s representative on the North Oakland Transportation Authority board if the law allows it.
Village residents interested in applying for Cloutier’s seat can contact Clerk Susan Nassar. She can be reached by e-mailing or calling (248) 628-2543.
In order to be eligible to serve on council, the village charter states applicants must be a village resident for at least six months, at least 21 years of age and a registered voter.
Applicants also cannot be “in default to the village,” meaning they can’t owe the municipality any money. For example, they can’t have delinquent property taxes or unpaid water/sewer/garbage bills.

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