BAYOU VISTA — Citing the recent death of his mother, Mayor Bobby Rosenquist resigned from office Monday night. The mayor had already been spending a lot of time out of state as his mother battled liver disease until she died last month.
“With my work schedule, family and city responsibilities, it’s been a very hectic time,” Rosenquist wrote. “As a result, I have relied heavily on Mayor Pro Tem Vaun Henry this past month to take care of the city business so I could handle family issues in North Carolina. Unfortunately, with this new turn of events, this does not look like things will change, and I will be in North Carolina for the better part of the next few months handling my mother’s estate.”
Rosenquist had been mayor since he was elevated from mayor pro tem after former Mayor Ed Flanagan resigned in November 2010. Rosenquist was elected to the mayor’s spot in 2011 and re-elected in May. He was unopposed.
“I simply cannot dedicate the time this city needs to continue on its road to recovery (from 2008’s Hurricane Ike) and with as much time and effort I have invested in this city, it should be obvious that I want, and have always wanted, the very best for Bayou Vista,” Rosenquist wrote. “I believe there is plenty to be proud of in this city. I am very proud of the excess funds we have. We have almost doubled the city’s cash flow and our reserve funds in the past two years.
“Not only have we held the (tax) rates down and increased our reserves, but we have made much needed upgrades to city equipment such as computers and police vehicles.”
When Rosenquist took the helm, the city was nearly broke and its emergency funds depleted after being spent on projects within the city without the city council’s knowledge.
Soon after taking office, the Galveston County District Attorney’s Office and the state launched investigations that centered on the city’s handling of Hurricane Ike aid by the prior administration and former Police Chief Ed Lucas, who was at first suspended but then resigned.
The investigations continue, the district attorney’s office said recently.
Soon after taking office, Rosenquist opened up the city’s books and began posting financial reports and other information on the city’s website.
Still, he has had his detractors, most notably Councilman Rick Nally, who has been critical of Rosenquist’s management and the oversight of road projects. Nally accused the mayor of withholding critical information from the council, a charge Rosenquist steadily denied.
With Rosenquist’s resignation, Henry will become mayor until a special election is conducted.