By EDWARD HUSARHerald-Whig Staff Writer
MOUNT STERLING, Ill. -- Meeting in emergency session Friday night, the Mount Sterling City Council accepted the resignation of Mayor Billie Burge and appointed Ward 3 Alderman Matt Bradbury as acting mayor.
Burge, who has been mayor since April 2007, submitted a letter of resignation Friday morning, citing "personal reasons."
"He felt he was no longer able to fulfill his obligations as mayor," said City Clerk Brandi Goben.
Burge could not be reached Friday evening to elaborate on his reasons for stepping down.
Burge was initially elected as a Ward 2 alderman in 2003 and was re-elected to another four-year term as alderman in 2007. However, in April 2007 he was appointed mayor after Jim Jennings resigned. Burge was subsequently elected to a full four-year term as mayor in April 2009. The mayor's seat will be up for election again in April 2013.
Goben said the City Council decided to convene an emergency meeting Friday night to make sure the city had an acting mayor on duty until the council can meet in regular session Monday to reconfirm Bradbury's appointment. In addition to serving as the city's chief representative on official matters, the mayor also serves as police commissioner and liquor commissioner.
"We didn't want to go all weekend without having an actual official" serving in all those capacities, Goben said.
Goben said it was not immediately clear if Bradbury would step down as alderman while serving as acting mayor.
"Technically he doesn't have to resign his position as alderman," she said. "He can serve both. Whether or not he's going to do that, I don't know."