City of Lodi’s government re-organized in the last regular meeting of the year on Wednesday December 16, 2020. At the same time, protesters were outside of Lodi’s City Hall demanding the council declare Lodi a sanctuary city for businesses and schools.
Two new council members for the City of Lodi were sworn in after over one hour into the council meeting’s live stream. With the vote certified by the council, Shak Khan will represent District 4 and Mikey Hothi with represent District 5 until the end of 2024. These were the first by-district elections for Districts 4 and 5 since Lodi changed election systems at the end of 2017.
In addition to the new council members, the Mayor and Mayor Pro Tempore (Vice Mayor) were elected from among the current sitting council members. Before the vote took place, Mayor Doug Kuehne reflected on the exhausting year including racial protests, wildfires, and a global pandemic. He also thanked numerous members of Lodi’s government.
Lodi’s Mayor and Mayor Pro Tempore Election Process: In Lodi, the council holds nominations for the new Mayor during the last regular council meeting of the year. A vote is then taken among the council members in order of nomination. The first nominee to get a majority of votes becomes elected to the office of Mayor. Council member Mark Chandler nominated council member Alan Nakanishi, and Mayor Doug Kuehne seconded the nomination. All five members voted in favor of electing Alan Nakanishi to Mayor of Lodi for 2020-2021.
Dr. Nakanishi was first elected to the City Council in 1998, was Mayor Pro Tempore from 2019-2020, and was previously elected Mayor from 2000-2001, 2012-2013, and 2017-2018.
After the election, Mayor Nakanishi opened nominations for Mayor Pro Tempore, but suggested to the new council members that those who have been on the council for the past two years should be nominated.
“Why do I say this? Because it’s a learning process to be Mayor and Vice Chair. Members Hothi and Khan you’ll have your time to be Mayors.”Mayor Alan Nakanishi
Council member Kuehne was the first to nominate council member Chandler to Mayor Pro Tempore. Council members Hothi and Khan, alongside Mayor Nakanishi, supported council member Kuehne’s nomination. All five members of the council voted unanimously for Mark Chandler as Mayor Pro Tempore of Lodi for 2020-2021.
The meeting was closed in memory of Mervin Reimche, who passed away on December 9, 2020 at the age of 77.