New era begins

Rochelle City Clerk Sue Messer gives the oath of office to new Rochelle Mayor John Bearrows on Monday morning at city hall.

Bearrows sworn in as Rochelle mayor

ROCHELLE — A new era has begun in Rochelle on Monday morning.

John Bearrows was officially sworn in as mayor, while three council members also took the oath of office during a ceremony held at Rochelle City Hall.

“I’m very excited to get going,” Bearrows said. “This is a strong council group and everyone has Rochelle’s best interests at heart.”

Incumbents Tom McDermott and Bil Hayes were both sworn in for another term, while newly elected councilman John Gruben will be starting his first stint on the Rochelle council. The trio join Dan McDermott and Kate Shaw-Dickey who are already seated in their respective terms.

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Bearrows was already a sitting councilman prior to being elected mayor, so that now vacant position will need to be filled through an appointment in the near future.

“People are asking me what changes I’m going to make right off the bat when I take office,” Bearrows said when addressing the crowd on hand Monday morning. “Really, things are going very well and I don’t think major changes need to be made. The main change with me as mayor is I’m going to provide a different viewpoint because of my background and experiences.”

Bearrows and the new city council will conduct its first official regular council meeting on Monday, May 13.

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