Fall River Reporter asked City Council President Cliff Ponte Jr if he had any comments after Thursday’s arrest of Mayor Jasiel Correia II.
“My focus at this point is to ensure that the residents of the city of Fall River are protected and there isn’t a change in the business of government. I have made myself available as Council President at a moments notice for our departments heads, city administrations, and our constituents.
The people of Fall River are resilient and our community is strong. We will move foward with determination to overcome adversity and to set forth our goals and ideals.”
According to the charter excerpt listed below, Cliff Ponte Jr is next in line should something happen to the mayor unless he is unable or unwilling to take over the duties of Mayor.
(a) Acting Mayor – Whenever, by reason of sickness or other cause, the mayor is unable to perform the duties of the office, the president of the city council shall be the acting mayor unless the president of the city council is unable or unwilling to serve; in such instance, the provisions of section 3-8 (c) shall apply. The city council, by the affirmative vote of 7 members, shall determine whether the mayor is unable to perform the duties of the office. The vote shall be taken in public session by a roll call vote.
(b) Powers of Acting Mayor – The acting mayor shall have only those powers of the mayor as are indispensable and essential to conduct the business of the city in an orderly and efficient manner and on which action may not be delayed. The acting mayor shall have no authority to make a permanent appointment or removal from city service unless the disability or absence of the mayor shall extend beyond 60 days, nor shall an acting mayor approve or disapprove of any measure adopted by the city council unless the time within which the mayor must act would expire before the return of the mayor. The city council president or any other city councilor who may be serving as acting mayor pursuant to section 3-8 (c) shall not act as a member of the city council.
(c) Succession – In the event that the city council president is unable or unwilling to serve as acting mayor under this section, the vice president of the city council shall serve as acting mayor; if either the city council president or vice president is unable or unwilling to serve, the city council shall then elect, from among its membership, a councilor to serve as acting mayor.