Kermit Mayor Quits After New City Manager is Hired 4/25/13
CBS 7 News
April 25, 2013
The news hit the City of Kermit hard.
A bold move by The Mayor of Kermit left many citizens with more questions than answers.
Mayor Brett Autry turned in his resignation letter after the City Council voted to bring in a new city manager who he strongly disagrees with.
In a split vote, Pete Kampfer, a former City Manager of Colorado City and Raton, NM was chosen to lead the city of Kermit.
The Kermit Chief of Police was required to do a background check, in which discovered nine pending cases against Kampfer by The New Mexico Attorney General. Most of them were for violating The Open Meetings Act according to the Attorney's website.
The Mayor says Kampfer is also notorious for suing the cities he worked for costing those cities money in lawsuits.
Residents like Gene Mitchell supports the Mayor and had many questions for the city council.
"Why hire someone with such a questionable past?" he said.
According to city records, Council member Betsy Natividad made the motion to hire Kampfer and Mike Cooper seconded it. Keri Carter voted in favor, Julio Pena voted against and Councilman Matt Randolph abstained.
The (former) Mayor says he hopes he is wrong about the new hire, but says history is known to repeat itself.
The City of Kermit has been without a City Manager for almost a year now.
According to past news stories, Pete Kampfer first made headlines as City Manager for Colorado City back in December 2010.
He was part of helping with the investigation of missing teenager Hailey Dunn.He made headlines once again after he was accused of violating the open meetings act in 2011, while serving as City Manager in Raton, NM:
He resigned the following year after a citizen filed a lawsuit against him and some commissioners for allegedly harming the city with improper actions.
Kampfer was set to begin his new position as City Manager in Kermit last month, but the city council voted to postpone his start pending an investigation into possible fraudulent or misleading information.
Kampfer denied giving any misleading information and said he believed the accusation was based on public comments made on Internet blogs.
He added that he has an attorney looking into the potential for legal action involving defamation of character and potential legal damages.