Monday’s New Braunfels City Council meeting began with election actions and the celebration of the work of city leadership in the past — as well as anticipation for the future.

Neal Linnartz and Mary Ann Labowski were administered the oath of office as the city’s new mayor and District 5 councilmember, respectively, and joined their colleagues on the dais.

“I look forward to serving New Braunfels and being your voice,” Labowski said. “I want to thank Mayor (Rusty) Brockman and Jason Hurta for your service … I look forward for y’all to mentor me and Neal, and I’m very blessed, and I look forward to serving y’all.”

Mayor Linnartz then read the next item on the agenda; staff and the city council recognized Brockman and Hurta’s public service.

City Manager Robert Camareno presented a proclamation along with a flag as a gift to Brockman to recognize his service as mayor.

“It has been an honor,” Brockman said. “I wouldn’t trade the last 38 months for anything. I followed a great person and I hope I left just a little bit of a mark someplace that made a difference because everyone … from my family to the city family and those sitting behind me, have made a difference in my life.”

Following the former mayor’s speech, council members said a few kind words to him. Additionally, Councilmember Lawrence Spradley gifted him a mug that Brockman stood up to read.

“It says, ‘Rusty Brockman, retired mayor, 2020 to 2023,’ and in asterisks, ‘It’s your problem now,’” he said.

Mayor Linnartz then presented a proclamation and plaque recognizing Hurta’s service as a District 5 councilmember.

After Hurta said his farewells, thanking his family and city staff, the council members also said a few words to Hurta.

Councilmember Spradley also gifted a mug to Hurta, who read his mug to those in attendance.

“‘Jason Hurta, District 5 retired councilman, 2020 to 2023,’” Hurta said. “‘Not my problem anymore.’”

The next item on the agenda was electing a mayor pro tem. Councilmember Andres Campos motioned to elect Councilmember Harry Bowers as the mayor pro tem for another year.

Councilmember Christopher Willis seconded the motion, and the motion passed unanimously, with Bowers abstaining from the vote.

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