News Releases and Media Advisories

Ward One Alderman Israel Resigns

April 09, 2013

Annapolis Mayor Joshua J. Cohen accepted Ward One Alderman Richard E. Israel’s resignation, effective immediately.

Alderman Israel resigned at the conclusion of last night’s City Council meeting after submitting his intentions in a letter to the mayor Friday, April 5.

In the letter, Mr. Israel explained that he will be moving out of his Shaw Street home, into the Ginger Cove Community, which is not located in the ward or city he was elected to represent. The alderman said he is resigning now, rather then when he moves in May, his appointed successor will be able to participate in the budget deliberations.

“I wish to thank the Mayor, Aldermen and Alderwomen,” Alderman Israel said. “Above all, I wish to thank the voters of the First Ward for twice entrusting me with this office. It is indeed an honor and privilege to represent the community where I have lived for almost thirty eight years.”

According to City Code, when an alderperson resigns within 15 months of the next regular City election, the Central Committee of the political party to which the alderperson belongs shall appoint the replacement.

Mayor Cohen has accepted Mr. Israel’s resignation and has verbally notified Kitty Higgins, Chair of the Democratic Central Committee, that he will formally give her written notice of the vacancy today. At that time Ms. Higgins will have five days to schedule a public hearing where the Committee will interview qualified applicants and vote to appoint a replacement. The mayor will then administer the oath of office to the newly appointed alderperson at the following City Council meeting.

”Dick is a consummate legislator whose knowledge of the law, attention to detail and adherence to the highest standard of excellence, have served his constituents and the City Council well,” Mayor Cohen said. “Most of all, though, Dick is a true gentleman. I will miss his decency, his sense of humor, his passion for our community and his warm spirit. His resignation from the Council is bittersweet for us but we know it is the right thing for Dick, and we wish him all the best.”

In his eight year career as an Annapolis City Council Alderman, he served as the Chair of the Finance Committee with oversight of the City’s budget and was Chair of the Rules and City Government Committee with review of all proposed amendments to the City Charter and Zoning Code.

“I speak for all of Ward One in saying we will miss you Dick,” Ward One Resident Association President Joe Budge said. “Thank you for your tremendous service to our community. You have all of our best wishes for the future.”

Alderman Israel introduced bills establishing a citywide Heritage Commission and a Blue Ribbon Commission on City finances. The Council approved his Adequate Public Facilities legislation, a Bond Fund and the Citizens Committee to Review Alcoholic Beverage Laws (CCRABL). His legislation introduced First Sundays to Annapolis, March Madness, the Boat Shows, and the regulation of special events.

Annapolis City Council

Ward Two Alderman Frederick M. Paone

“Dick Israel is a wonderful man with a wonderful intellect whose contributions will be felt for years to come.”

Ward Three Alderwoman Dr. Classie G. Hoyle

“WOW! He has wowed me ever since I can remember. His quick wit coupled with his curiosity and love of pure knowledge will be missed.”

Ward Four Alderwoman Sheila M. Finlayson

“He will be sorely missed. His legal mind and historical perspective will leave a void in our deliberations. I wish him the very, very best in health and happiness.”

Ward Five Alderman Jared Littmann

"I am in awe and appreciation of Alderman Israel's accomplishments, legal prowess, and reputation. He's earned this City's gratitude, with his courage, commitment, and dedication to Ward One and the City of Annapolis."

Ward Six Alderman Kenneth A. Kirby

“Not only have we come to rely on Alderman Israel’s knowledge of the City’s laws and regulations, but we have come to depend on his overall approach to civility. While he will be missed greatly by all of us on City Council, he will be missed even more by the constituency he served.”

Ward Seven Alderman Ian Pfeiffer

"One of the great pleasures of my term on the Council has been getting to know Dick Israel. He has dedicated his life to serving his state and his city, with a keen intellect, a very strong sense of humor and a sense of duty and honor that is remarkable."

Ward Eight Alderman Ross H. Arnett, III

“I always looked to Alderman Israel for both knowledge of law and his ethics. I have long admired his being the consummate gentleman and he will be missed. It may be overused, but some people are truly irreplaceable and Dick is one of those people.”

Individuals wishing to write to Mr. Israel can go to http://bit.ly/YfcrcA and leave a message.