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John Leggett appointed to Buckley City Council

John Leggett has been appointed to the vacant seat on the Buckley City Council, voted in by a quorum of the councillors at a July 18 special meeting.

Leggett was selected after a 90-minute question-and-answer session side-by-side with Marvin Sundstrom, his rival. Third candidate Brian Gilooly dropped out of the running due to increasing work demands.

Leggett is a former sports writer and Buckley city reporter for the Courier-Herald newspapers, and a 20-year resident of Buckley.

"I feel great," he said. "I wanted to do it for a long time, but I couldn't because of the conflict of interest it would present.

"As soon as I heard Doug (Harple) had resigned, I applied for the position."

Though the interview process was extensive, Leggett said he felt he was able to answer all questions.

He said he hoped to keep the Buckley Youth Center open and, in agreement with opponent Sundstrom, he also said he wanted to maintain parks and the city cemetery.

Leggett is coming onto the council as it finds itself at a crossroads. The jail, 911 dispatch, youth center, senior center and parks services are all under scrutiny as the voting body determines how to balance the budget before year's end.

"I'm going to be a little tentative starting out," Leggett said. "I don't want to be the one to step on any toes, but soon I'll be up their voicing my opinions with the rest of them.

"I'm a little nervous about the jail closure, but it's losing money. With the deficit the way it is, it has to be done."

The appointee will be sworn in Tuesday at the opening of the regular council meeting.

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