WILLOUGHBY HILLS, Ohio– A judge granted a temporary restraining order against Willoughby Hills Mayor Robert Weger.
Last week, Weger tried to removed six of the seven city council members, accusing them of gross misconduct. He said they improperly hired a law director, passed charter amendments without input from the public and drastically cut his administrative budget.
Weger changed the locks on city hall and said he would appoint unelected council members as replacements.
The city of Willoughby Hills filed for a restraining order on behalf of ousted council members Nancy Fellows, John Plecnik, David Fiebig, Laura Lenz, Janet Majka and Laura Pizmoht.
“Allowing Weger to oust elected officials contrary to law and without due process is fundamentally inconsistent with the democratic process, and designed to create a government run through a dictatorship rather than through the proper legislative, executive and judicial process,” the city said in a news release on Tuesday.
Retired Geauga County Common Pleas Judge David Fuhry approved the order as a visiting judge.
“Mayor Robert Weger’s actions in removing plaintiff council members are stayed pending further order of court, the affect council members and their legislative employees are accordingly restored to their positions with all attendant powers and privileges,” the judge wrote.