UPDATE 9/26/2023: The mayor of Willard had more remarks today, following last night’s Board of Aldermen meeting where bills of impeachment were introduced.

Mayor Samuel Snider issued a written statement today, saying:

“Today is a day for quiet reflection. I am only one man, but last night, I aimed to humble myself and take personal responsibility for my role in Willard’s disharmony.

I heard several citizens calling for us to work together. I remain committed to facing the challenges ahead for our City and to respecting other’s opinions.”

Samuel Snider, Mayor of the City of Willard

WILLARD, Mo. — “No matter what happens next, I want to be on record. I accept responsibility for my actions, consistent with the values I have learned in this community.”

That’s what Willard Mayor Samuel Snider had to say at tonight’s Board of Aldermen meeting before bills of impeachment were introduced.

This comes after a special meeting Sept. 14 where the board censured Snider for his decision to fire the interim city administrator. Censure is a public action and statement of disapproval.

At tonight’s meeting, Snider apologized for his actions and accepted the censure, but at the end of the meeting, the board introduced his impeachment.

“When it came right down to it, I realized I am responsible for my actions,” Snider said. “When I was elected, people put their trust in me, not just for the nuts and bolts of government, but to join with the other experienced leaders in our community.”

After Snider’s apology, the meeting was business as usual. It lasted less than an hour, but the public was allowed to comment.

All three of the people who spoke were critical of their local leaders.

“I can’t even imagine what the staff feels like,” said one resident. “That has to work with all of you and witness all of this in real-time. If you think your antics don’t affect every city employee that comes in contact with you, you are wrong. It does, it affects them greatly. It’s embarrassing.”

Another speaker addressed the board’s arguments, saying, “I have just seen you guys sitting here arguing with each other. There’s just no point if you’re not actually effective in what you’re doing. It’s just, it’s just depressing, honestly.”

The controversy between Snider and the Board of Aldermen began over the mayor’s decision to fire the newly appointed interim city administrator.

According to a written statement from Snider, Alderman Sam Baird was acting as Mayor Pro-Tem when the board voted to hire a Willard resident and former alderwoman for the administrator role. The action was taken on Sept. 11, while Snider was away at a conference.

In the statement, Snider wrote that he chose to terminate the woman’s employment on Sept. 13 in accordance with city ordinance and stated:

It is my belief the hiring of Ms. Stewart as interim City Administrator (who clearly does not possess the proper education, qualifications or experience for the role) was made illegally and the actions of the board of Aldermen did not follow the spirit or intent of the ordinance passed by the City of Willard.

Samuel Snider, Mayor of the City of Willard

The special meeting of Sept. 14 was called to discuss the interim city administrator’s removal and to formally censure Snider.

A hearing to vote on Snider’s impeachment will be held in October.