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Two East Lansing city council members resign after oust of city attorney

Courtesy City of East Lansing

Two members of the East Lansing city council, including the mayor, have resigned over the termination of the city attorney.

Councilmembers Aaron Stephens, Lisa Babcock and Jessy Gregg won a 3-to-2 vote to oust Tom Yeadon during Tuesday’s meeting.

Ruth Beier, who served as mayor before resigning over the dispute along with Mark Meadows, says she disagrees with the firing of Yeadon. She says she resigned after determining that the next step of the remaining council would be the dismissal of city manager George Lahanas.

“So during the worst crisis that East Lansing has ever seen, probably, these three people were going to get rid of our top-level management, who do a good job," said Beier "And I said this is a disaster, I can’t affect it, and I don’t want to be associated with it.”

Babcock says she has assured Lahanas that there is no plan to fire him. She adds that the council voted to dismiss the city attorney because they think he handled similar criminal cases against Black and white defendants differently.

“To the best of my knowledge, the city manager’s not going anywhere," said Babcock. "I spoke with him this morning and conveyed my support for him, and my understanding was that he’s happy in East Lansing and plans to stay put.”

Stephens becomes mayor following the resignations. The remaining members of the council will appoint people to fill those posts.