Mayor Weatherford mum on recent firings


July 1, 2021

-File photo

Mayor Zac Weatherford

By Loyal and Charlotte Baker

With Melissa Gemmell, Dayton Chronicle Reporter

DAYTON–Lingering questions about the June 16 firing of three City of Dayton officials remain unanswered this week after repeated attempts by the Dayton Chronicle to contact Mayor Zac Weatherford have been met with silence.

As reported last week, Mayor Weatherford fired City Administrator Trina Cole, Planning and Community Development Director Meagan Hayes and Public Works Director Jim Costello on the morning of Wednesday, June 16. The actions were confirmed by Mayor Pro Tem Dain Nysoe in the front-page story written by Chronicle Reporter Melissa Gemmell and published last week.

In that story, Gemmell reported that repeated attempts to reach Weatherford for comment and additional information were made but Weatherford did not respond to the inquiries. He was then said to be on vacation the week the story appeared in the June 24 edition.

In the intervening days, Gemmell has made further attempts to contact Weatherford, who was present at the Columbia County Commissioners' work session Monday morning, June 28. At that meeting, according to Gemmell, Weatherford was asking the commissioners for stop-gap assistance from the county planning office so that City of Dayton-related building permits and other planning and development functions could continue without undue delay.

The newspaper's attempts to communicate with Weatherford have included telephone, text message and emailed modes of communication.

A special meeting of the Dayton City Council has been called for Wednesday, June 30 at 6 p.m. On the agenda are two items, a presentation by Port of Columbia Director Jennie Dickinson on broadband in Dayton, and a "general discussion" on future staffing.

The meeting will be a hybrid Zoom/in-person meeting. To join, visit or phone 1-253-215-8782 or 1-929-205-6099. The meeting ID is 827 0200 2285.

The next regular city council meeting will be July 14 at 6 p.m.


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