Nixa Ward 1 Alderman Michael Durbin

The Ward 1 Alderman in Nixa is seeking to have that town's mayor removed from office citing the mayor's drunk driving guilty plea on Tuesday (02-16-10.)

Michael Durbin states the mayor specifically violated three of six provisions in the City Ordinances which outline the grounds for which removal from office are sufficient; culpable negligence or dereliction of duty, willful misconduct in office, and an act inconsistent with official duty or character.

Mayor Brian Hayes was stopped by a Nixa police officer for suspicion of drunk driving last June. When the officer realized that he had pulled the mayor over, he requested that the Highway Patrol take over the investigation.

Mayor Brian Hayes

Durbin says in letters sent to the mayor and aldermen that culpable negligence is defined
as “recklessly acting without reasonable caution and putting another person at risk of injury or death” of which the mayor most certainly did when driving while intoxicated. He also charged the Mayor was guilty of willful misconduct, defined as “conscious or intentional disregard of the rights or the safety of others” by driving while intoxicated.

Durbin wants his fellow city council members and city administrators to convene an emergency meeting to remove the mayor from office.

Durbin who is also running for reelection in April writes, “The Mayor swore to uphold the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of Missouri in addition to the Ordinances of the City of Nixa, all of these were built upon principles of virtue.

Hayes was scheduled to have a jury trial in April, but made a stand up plea on February 16, 2010, and admitted that he had indeed broken the law. "Mayor Brian Hayes has not shown good character or virtue by driving while intoxicated in a community where we receive recognition for our Police Department’s efforts to curb drunk driving. Our DARE officer won recognition of being the DARE officer of the year in the state of Missouri for his efforts teaching our children the effects of drugs and alcohol and ultimately answers to our Mayor who sends an opposite signal to our children. It’s the wrong signal to the children and our community, Durbin says.

Hayes says he was a little surprised at the timing of Durbin's request to impeach him and questions whether it is politically motivated on the alderman's part.

Durbin defends his actions in his news release, "As the official over our Police Department, our mayor should be an example of virtue to our both. Whether the Mayor has 50 or 500 days left in office, it’s imperative that we expect more out of our elected officials and hold them to the rules set in place by the Ordinances of our city.”

Hayes was given a 30 day jail sentence and fined $350.00 when he entered his guilty plea, however, the jail sentence and fine were suspended and Hayes was placed on two years unsupervised probation. Visiting Judge Mitch Hough also ordered Hayes to perform 60 hours of community service as part of the plea agreement.


NOTE: THE HIGHLIGHTED LINKS ARE THE ACTUAL LETTER AND PRESS RELEASE SENT OUT BY MICHAEL DURBIN.

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