San Antonio – As he takes an indefinite leave of absence from his position on the San Antonio City Council, Clayton Perry (D10) says he will stop drawing a paycheck.
Perry asked his fellow council members on Monday for a “sabbatical,” amid reports of his involvement in a hit-and-run crash near his North Side home on Nov. 6.
City council members make an annual salary of $45,722. A city spokeswoman originally said on Tuesday that Perry and his temporary replacement, who has yet to be appointed, would both be paid while the councilman is away.
However, Perry’s chief of staff told KSAT late Tuesday afternoon in a phone call that the councilman plans to work with the city’s human resources department to decline his pay while he is on his leave of absence.
His chief of staff said Perry has never taken the city health insurance.
Perry faces a Class B misdemeanor charge for failing to stop and provide information in a crash causing more than $200 worth of damage. San Antonio Police have also said they plan to file a DWI charge for the Bexar County District Attorney’s Office to review, though that had not yet happened as of Tuesday afternoon.
Perry’s fellow council members agreed to his request for a temporary leave of absence during a special meeting Monday in which they were originally scheduled to ask him to resign.
Though they publicly chastised him with a vote of “no-confidence,” most of the council first agreed to remove the language requesting Perry resign his seat.
Mayor Ron Nirenberg voted against that change, while Perry and Councilman Jalen McKee-Rodriguez (D2) abstained.
The council then unanimously agreed, with Perry abstaining, to update the resolution to account for a process to fill Perry’s vacant seat.
CALLING WOULD-BE D10 COUNCIL TEMPS
Beyond a few basic requirements, such as being a U.S. citizen, a San Antonio resident for at least one year, and a District 10 resident for at least six months, applicants only need to fill out a few forms to apply.
At its next scheduled B-session -- non-voting council meetings reserved for in-depth briefings -- on Nov. 30, the city council will be able to choose up to three of the applicants to interview at its Dec. 1 meeting.
The Dec. 1 A-session is a voting session for the council. Following the interviews, the council will vote on which candidate to appoint.
“In the event no candidate gets a majority vote, the city council will vote again on the two candidates with the most votes,” according to city ordinance.
The appointee will be immediately sworn into office and able to vote on behalf of District 10.
Their appointment would last either until the end of Perry’s current term, which lasts until early June 2023, or until Perry decides to return.
When that could be is anyone’s guess.
Perry told council that, during his leave of absence, “I’ll be taking the appropriate measures as determined by medical professionals to ensure this will never, never happen again. I commit wholeheartedly to whatever course of action or rehabilitation they recommend.”
It’s not clear how the replacement will be worked into city council committees, though.
The mayor stripped Perry of his committee assignments in a reshuffling of the nine city council committees Monday.
Although it followed the council’s acceptance of Perry’s requestfor a leave of absence, the mayor’s office confirmed the committee reshuffling had been drafted before Perry announced his plans, indicating the mayor had planned to strip him of the assignments if he had stayed.
The resulting reshuffling made no mention of the still-to-be-appointed replacement, but the mayor’s office says it will reevaluate assignments after the vacancy is filled.
Perry’s chief of staff, Paul Jimenez, said the District 10 office would continue to handle constituent issues, texting KSAT the following statement:
”The Office of City Council District 10 remains open for business. While the office is led by a Councilmember, we all report to the residents of District 10 and will continue working to fulfill their needs throughout this time. Our office has the full support of City Staff to continue working for the neighbors in District 10.“