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Morris city clerk to retire in Februrary

After 37 years of service Enger leaves because of health issues

Published: Saturday, Jan. 4, 2014 5:30 a.m. CST

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MORRIS – After 37 years of serving the city of Morris, City Clerk John Enger will be retiring next month.

Enger said Friday his resignation will be effective at the end of the day Feb. 3. He is resigning because of health issues. In spring 2013, Enger was out of work for several months because of illness, but returned in the fall.

“John has done a tremendous job for this community and it is really blessed to have someone who understands all facets of the city. ... John is a wealth of knowledge of all things being born and raised here, from knowing the people as well as knowing what makes the city of Morris the city of Morris,” Mayor Richard Kopczick said. “He will be sorely missed.”

The Morris City Council will have to accept Enger’s retirement notice and is expected to do so at a council meeting later this month.

Enger first started with the city in 1977 as the city treasurer, which he held until the spring of 1981 when he was elected as Third Ward alderman. His first term as alderman ended in 1985 at which time he was re-elected. But after about two years, he resigned to become city clerk in 1987 after Marge Warren retired.

“I pride myself on winning 10 straight elections and I worked under five mayors,” Enger said.

During his time in all these offices, he worked under mayors Donald Davidson, Don Barkley, Bud Washburn, Bob Feeney and Kopczick.

At some point in his career, the city switched from an appropriations system to a budget system at which time Enger also became the city’s budget officer.

Although he is retiring, Enger’s face still will be seen around city hall for awhile.

“The mayor and the finance committee want me to continue to do some budget work,” he said.

Kopczick said they are looking into using Enger as a consultant for some time through the transition to a new city clerk and budget officer. Enger said he planned on coming in a couple times a week to help.

The city is looking to fill the opening internally, Kopczick said, but he could not comment on which city employee or employees are being considered.

The position will be appointed by the mayor with the advice and consent of the Morris City Council, the same as when an alderman has been appointed in the past. The appointee also will be the city’s budget officer.

Because Enger is resigning before he is midway through his current term, whomever is appointed to replace him will only be in place until spring 2015.

“We anticipate the position will be on the ballot for the general election in April 2015 for a two-year term,” Kopczick said.

After those two years, the position will be up for election again for its full four-year term.

Carol Adair of the water and billing department has worked for Enger for seven years.

“He drives through the city in the mornings to make sure everything is going well,” she said. “He knows everyone in the city and knows its history. He just has so much in his head, he’s going to be missed.”

Enger said he plans to stay in Morris for his retirement and will miss working for the city.

“I thank the citizens of Morris for electing me 10 times,” he said.

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