Lipps to step down as mayor; will remain on Franklin council

When Franklin City Council meets for its annual reorganization meeting next week, the councilmen will have one fewer person to consider to serve as mayor for 2014.

Current Mayor Scott Lipps told council at its Dec. 16 meeting that he would not be able to serve another year as the city’s mayor due to new obligations.

Franklin’s mayor and vice mayor are selected annually from among the council members. The mayor receives $8,500 a year and the other council members are paid $8,000 a year.

Originally elected to a council seat in 1999, Lipps has two years remaining on his current four-year term. He also served as the city’s mayor in 2008.

He said he would not be able to put in the time to serve as mayor because of new responsibilities he recently took on to serve as the 2014 Potentate (president) of the Antioch Shrine in Dayton

“The Shrine, plus still working full-time, makes serving as mayor too much,” Lipps said. “I simply could not do the job (as mayor) properly and be fair to the citizens of Franklin.”

Lipps said he’s proud of the opportunity to serve on council and that Franklin residents care deeply and get involved to make the city great. He also praised the city staff and employees for its hard work in serving residents and said 2013 was a year of stability for Franklin.

“We saw our economy stabilize, home foreclosures slowed and most importantly, we kept our promise to our citizens that we would invest their money safely, properly and on services important to them,” Lipps said.

During 2013, Lipps said council worked with Franklin police to target enforcement in the downtown area to clean up the drug problem.

“We haven’t won this war on drugs, but we certainly put a dent in it,” he said.

As mayor, he also made it a point to make sure Franklin had a seat at the table in various Warren County meetings and discussions. Lipps said he attended 55 meetings with various officials and county agencies. He was active with the Warren County Area Progress Council and met several times with Warren County Port Authority officials and started a new relationship with the Warren County Convention and Visitors Bureau. In addition, Lipps also worked to strengthen Franklin’s relationships with the mayors of Carlisle and Springboro.

“I hope the next mayor continues to make Franklin more active in Warren County,” he said. “We need to continue to build and strengthen our relationships with our neighbors and the county.”

Lipps said his only regret as 2013 mayor was struggling to revitalize Franklin’s downtown.

“Every time it snows, just drive to the city limits, check the roads and you will get a nice little positive boost that Franklin gets it done,” Lipps said.