The Lansing mayor says he is in favor of restoring the traditional makeup of the Leavenworth County Fire District No. 1 Board Trustees until an appeal of a court case is settled.

The Lansing mayor says he is in favor of restoring the traditional makeup of the Leavenworth County Fire District No. 1 Board Trustees until an appeal of a court case is settled.

Mayor Mike Smith is a member of what is known as the Joint Board, which appoints the people who serve on the Fire District No. 1 Board of Trustees. He said the Joint Board will meet to reconsider actions taken last month. But there was no word Friday on when the meeting will take place.

Fire District No. 1 provides fire department services to the city of Lansing and Delaware and High Prairie townships.

In 2003, the Joint Board approved a resolution indicating the fire district’s governing body would be made up of three people from the city of Lansing, one person from Delaware Township and one person from High Prairie Township.

The Joint Board previously followed this practice when making appointments to the Fire District No. 1 Board of Trustees.

But during a Jan. 22 meeting, the Joint Board voted to appoint an additional Lansing resident to the fire district board instead of a Delaware Township resident. These actions were approved by the Joint Board’s Lansing representatives and opposed by the representatives from Delaware and High Prairie townships.

As a result, four of the five members of the Fire District No. 1 Board of Trustees are now Lansing residents. The remaining member is from the High Prairie Township. A resident of the Delaware Township no longer serves on the fire district board.

“I’m going to try to correct that,” Smith said Friday in a telephone interview.

But Smith noted that he is only one vote on the Joint Board.

Smith did not serve on the Joint Board in 2003 and he was unaware of the resolution concerning the makeup of the fire district board during the Jan. 22 meeting.

In addition to Smith, the current members of the Joint Board are Lansing City Council members Kerry Brungardt and Tony McNeill as well as Delaware Township Trustee Travis Hunsecker and High Prairie Township Trustee Brian Kellogg.

The Joint Board was established through an interlocal agreement between Lansing, the two townships and the Leavenworth County government.

The agreement has been at the center of a legal battle.

Lansing officials have announced they plan to terminate the interlocal agreement. They have argued the assets of Fire District No. 1 should be divided among the parties upon termination of the agreement.

The townships filed a lawsuit against the city. And Leavenworth County District Judge David King has ruled termination of the agreement cannot be used to require apportionment of the assets of the fire district.

Smith said the judge’s decision will be appealed.

Smith said he supports restoring the makeup of the Fire District No. 1 Board of Trustees to three Lansing residents, one Delaware Township resident and one High Prairie Township resident while the appeal is pending.

The Lansing mayor said the Joint Board has the power to revoke the 2003 resolution that addressed the makeup of the fire district board.

“I don’t think we want to keep going in that direction,” he said.

The Leavenworth County Fire District No. 1 Board of Trustees were scheduled to meet Monday. But Todd Farley, chief of Leavenworth County Fire District No. 1, said the fire district board meeting is being postponed until the Joint Board can reconvene.

Smith said he hopes a meeting of the Joint Board can be scheduled for the upcoming week.

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