Benz to step down from County Council after assuming leadership of TRAA

TRAA Executive Director Joel Benz
TRAA Executive Director Joel Benz(WPTA)
Updated: Sep. 24, 2021 at 10:37 AM EDT
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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA) - Allen County Council member Joel Benz will tender his resignation to the Council once he assumes the lead role at the Three Rivers Ambulance Authority.

Benz was selected by unanimous vote on Thursday to become TRAA’s next executive director.

In addition to his experience as a government official, Benz is a paramedic with training that he hopes will help him stabilize an agency that has been embroiled in turmoil of late.

Allen County Republican Chairman Steve Shine said he expects to receive written notification from Benz on Oct. 4 -- the same day Benz writes to the Council -- with the resignation taking effect at the end of the day on Oct. 21.

That date is significant because the Council is expected to vote on a budget at its Oct. 21 meeting, and Benz is involved in the process of developing that fiscal plan.

Benz’s term on the 7-member Council runs through December 2022.

He is not required to leave that post in order to take the TRAA position, however, and could have held both simultaneously.

Committeemen and committeewomen from the Allen County Third District will choose someone to complete the term.

Shine said the process will be conducted in a manner that allows for a near-immediate transition, without a vacancy on the Council, with the newly appointed member in place ahead of the Nov. 18 meeting.

Council members are responsible for key financial decisions, including the establishment of the Allen County budget, setting tax rates and managing debt loads.

Three members of the Council are elected at-large, with the other four representing geographic districts.

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