Search the online edition
of The Herald-Chronicle
site search by freefind.
File Photo/Herald-Chronicle

Jeremy Gaston | Managing Editor

CARBONDALE—After serving half of his four-year term, Carbondale City Council Member Ashton Traphagan has resigned his seat.

Traphagan, who was absent from the last two meetings, resigned in a letter sent to council member Alex Zerbe.

“Ashton sent a letter and he’s going to resign his position on the city council. He has been elected president of the Carbondale Lions Club. He thought his community service would be better done by doing that.”

Carbondale Mayor Ruth Towne immediately appointed former council member George Reed to fill the position. The motion was approved by Zerbe and council members Lee Curtis and John Ryan. Council member Cheryl Lister was absent.

In addition to Traphagan’s resignation, Zerbe presented two other new business items not listed on the agenda.

Zerbe presented changes to the city’s emergency management plan, following a meeting with Osage County Emergency Management Coordinator Bryce Romine.

“This protects us to make sure things are in line,” Zerbe said. “Some of the things have changed a little bit, and we’re one of a few towns around here that have a plan together.”

Most of the changes involved retitling positions to conform to FEMA standards, such as renaming the city emergency coordinator the Carbondale Incident Commander, and the city’s first responders Strike Force Leaders.

“Because of 9-11 and Katrina, all these agencies were responding and calling their people something different,” Zerbe said. “Now we’re compliant with everything.”

Zerbe encouraged all city employees to obtain FEMA cards from Romine.

“That’s very important,” Zerbe said. “If something happens and someone other than the local police agency is manning the city, they may not let us cross the line.”

Zerbe also presented the availability of weather radios for $12, which can be sold by the city, and mentioned by the county’s emergency notification system. Anyone may sign up for the notification system under the “Emergency Management “ link at

Zerbe also mentioned Traphagan’s intent to help organize a community calendar of events.

“Felicia and Ashton (Traphagan) are looking to become kind of a Carbondale event planner,” Zerbe said.

Zerbe said the Traphagans would be scheduling more events in town, and working with the local organizations doing much of the scheduling.

“In the past, there has been some conflict with events held at the same time, or not in coordination with each other,” Zerbe said.

“They’re not there to plan, just to keep a master calendar.”
In other business, the council:

For the complete story, subscribe to the print or online edition of The Osage County Herald-Chronicle at