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Effort to recall Plattsmouth mayor begins

Posted at 10:11 PM, Jun 06, 2019

PLATTSMOUTH, Neb. (KMTV) — Just a few months ago city workers at Oak Hill Cemetery removed precious items from gravestones. That enraged a lot of people, so much so that there's now an effort to recall the mayor of Plattsmouth.

Greg Hughes found out in a hard way that items on his family member's grave were removed and thrown in this ditch.

"My wife saw it on Facebook, on a picture. There's stuff, somebody took our stuff away from our gravestone and put it back in the woods and that's kind of upsetting,” says Hughes.

After this happened city administrator Erv Portis and Mayor Paul Lambert apologized for the lack of communication. But those upset wanted Portis removed, Mayor Lambert refused, saying Portis just wanted a clean cemetery.

"I don't think that's reason to fire anyone, he did his job, he's doing his job,” says Mayor Lambert.

When the mayor wouldn't act, Hughes started a petition to remove him.

"That kind of started it and once we looked into it and realized there is more than just the cemetery, the lack of communication wasn't just the cemetery it seems to be kind of for everything that happens with the city government,” says Hughes.

One of Hughes complaints is that a cemetery board should have made these calls, like it's legally supposed to, but no board existed, until after the cleanup issue occurred.

"They don't enforce those rules and then the city administrator and the mayor and sometimes the city council are the ones making all the decisions and the boards and the commissions should do that," says Hughes.

Lambert says during the cemetery cleanup, he and his administration were in the fight of their life, dealing with flooding issues, but he would change one thing.

"More communication. We were in the middle of the flood situation, my people, most of them, are doing twice the work they normally they're doing their regular jobs plus doing whatever we need to do to alleviate this flood problem,” says Lambert.

Now once Hughes officially starts gathering signatures, he's going to have thirty days to get 538 people to sign on. If that does happen, it goes to a recall election.