Several months after he effectively moved out of the community he was elected to lead, Mesquite Mayor Mark Wier has announced plans to step down.
“Effective May 12, I will resign as mayor of Mesquite,” he said at Tuesday’s City Council meeting.
His announcement came as no surprise to many in the council chamber. Wier has been working in St. George, Utah, since the first of the year. City Councilman Geno Withelder conducted all of the City Council meetings in January, as Wier attended training for his new job.
The council will choose a replacement to finish Wier’s term at its May 13 meeting.
Wier was elected in April 2011 during the primary, when he captured more than 50 percent of the vote to defeat incumbent Mayor Susan Holcheck.
That was the last municipal election to be held in the spring of an odd-numbered year. The council had voted to change the city’s election laws to even-numbered years to coincide with Clark County elections, which meant Wier would have served 5½ years instead of the usual four.
As a result of his resignation, he’ll serve just under three years, and his replacement more than 2½ years.
Wier and Mesquite just got finished dealing with the effects of a standoff between federal authorities and rancher Cliven Bundy from nearby Bunkerville.
The outgoing mayor addressed some of the ongoing impacts of the standoff on Tuesday.
Many of the armed militias that came to the Virgin Valley to support Bundy’s proclaimed “range war” against the BLM are settling into camps on the Bundy ranch a few miles south of Interstate 15, off state Route 170.
“I have heard many different things that have taken place in our city,” Wier said, but he assured the audience that the Mesquite Police Department is “protecting the citizens of Mesquite to the best of its ability.
“There have been some incidents, there’s no question about that. But anything that was done illegally, I have the full confidence in our police department to track those down and prosecute to the fullest extent of the law,” he said.