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Commissioner Derek Brown resigns after 4 years

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After serving Lewis and Clark County for 4 years, Commissioner Derek Brown is resigning.

He announced his decision online, listing various reasons as to why he's leaving the commission.  Republican County Commissioner Derek Brown says he had high hopes for the position when he took it on 4 years ago.  Now, he says his once optimistic view for Lewis and Clark County is gone.  Brown publicly announced on his personal blog that he's resigning from the position of Commissioner.

Brown says, "There is no, it's not like one big thing just happened.  It kind of reached the point of where I've have enough of this."

Commission Chairman, Democrat Andy Hunthausen, says he was aware of Brown's unhappiness.

Hunthausen says, "I guess it was a bit of a surprise, not completely, unexpected I know Commissioner Brown hasn't been completely happy with his job and this job is not for everyone."

After Brown took office in 2008, he says he immediately felt like an outcast.  Hunthausen disagrees, saying the commission provides a platform for everyone to present ideas.  Brown also claims county staff controls the decisions, not the elected representatives.  He says future commissioners need to take control back.

Brown says, "Well you have to get commissioners who are willing to stand up for the office and actually exert the power that the office has."

Moving forward, Hunthausen says it's important for the commission to stay focused on the current agenda.  The Republican Central Committee is charged with selecting 3 Republican candidates to the commission to replace Brown.  If the commission denies those candidates, 3 more candidates will be presented.

Tuesday, Nov. 20th, 2011 UPDATE: 11:15PM

Derek Brown was noticeably absent from today's commission meeting.
We spoke with him earlier today, he says he will not be attending future commission meetings unless a tie-breaking vote is needed, or if the commission is discussing a matter in which he is personally interested.
After Commissioner Derek Brown announced his intention to resign from his position in Lewis and Clark County, the GOP Central Committee is in the beginning phases of finding a replacement.

Chair Jean Johnson says the committee will have a 30 day window to present three candidates to the commission, starting on January 1st, once Brown's resignation is official.
If the Board of Commissioners does not select one of those three, the GOP will provide three more candidates, something Johnson says the committee will try to avoid.

Johnson says, “We will work very hard to come up with a very qualified candidate in the first three, and I will be confident that the commissioners will choose a candidate based on qualifications and that's all we will have to do."
The GOP Committee is still setting requirements and deadlines for applicants, but Johnson says they will most likely set an application deadline for some time in early December.

 Story by Jill Jagelski, Beartooth NBC.
Copyright ©2012 Beartooth Communications Company. All Rights Reserved.

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Derek Brown, Lewis and Clark County Commission, Andy Hunthausen, resignation

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