Ward 2 Councilmember Becca La Strada has resigned from the Sedalia City Council due to health reasons, effective immediately.
The news was announced during a press conference hosted by Mayor Steve Galliher Friday morning. La Strada, who has been on council since April 2011, handed in her letter of resignation to Galliher on Thursday.
“I have a health issue that has to be addressed right now. I’ve been sick off and on for six months and I didn’t realize what was wrong,” La Strada told the Democrat by phone. “I did not want the people of the ward to be without representation until I recuperated. I will miss this job very much and I am sure the mayor will appoint someone that will have the time and can take care of the city and the ward.”
Galliher said during the press conference he was “saddened” to share the news of La Strada’s resignation, but that he understood her reasons for doing so.
“We’re going to miss Becca, she is a nice lady. She’s just not feeling too good,” Galliher told the Democrat after the conference. “… She’s the type that wants to attend functions and take care of her constituents and when you can’t make everything you’d like to make, sometimes you feel like you’re shorting the job, and she’s not, but she has high standards and she likes to do as many things as she can and she feels like she can’t provide that right now.”
La Strada, who recently served as the Public Safety Committee Chair, had a long list of projects she was proud to be a part of during her time on council.
“I am happy that the council had the Washington Street viaduct repaired, the tornado siren in Hubbard Park, and I’m grateful to the county commissioners for completing the tornado shelters,” she said. “And of course I’m happy that we have the fire station up and running and the library has been repaired. Sedalia will move forward and I know that we have a good council and a good mayor and I know they will make the proper decisions for the citizens in Sedalia.”
Galliher noted she had been a part of several major projects, and that her dedication is something he’ll miss.
“She loved her ward, naturally, but she had the best interest of the city at heart too,” he said. “It’s a team effort, she was very good about wanting to get good information to make good decisions. That’s what I’m going to miss about her — she wasn’t afraid to voice her opinion or to be flexible too and compromise.”
La Strada’s exit marks the second councilmember from Ward 2 to resign this year — former councilmember Wanda Monsees resigned in May due to health problems. In order to prevent a gap on the council, Galliher said he hopes to have a recommendation for the council to vote on at the July 21 meeting, and that new member will be sworn in at the beginning of the meeting.
“I already have a couple candidates in mind, I just need to contact them to see if they will step in,” Galliher said.
Although La Strada is leaving the council, she may not be gone for good in city government. Galliher said he hopes to appoint La Strada to a board or committee once her health has improved because she is “an asset to the city,” and La Strada said she is definitely interested.
“I still want to be a part of helping our community and when I feel better Mayor Galliher has told me he would appoint me to a board to continue some community service,” she said.