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North York councilwoman reneges on resignation promise
Despite saying last week that she would resign in the face of backlash over crude remarks to a resident, Sandra Hinkle remains a North York borough councilwoman.
Hinkle tendered her resignation to the council Tuesday, but the offer came with one condition.
“At this time, I have no recourse but to resign. But before doing so, I will ask if my actions were that bad, (Councilman Bill) Jackson’s were as bad as well, and I ask for his immediate resignation as well. I will not sign this (resignation) unless that’s done,” Hinkle said, accusing Jackson of verbal and sexual harassment.
Several members of the public spoke out after Hinkle’s ultimatum, telling her to take responsibility for her comments.
When asked for comment after the meeting, Jackson refuted the allegations.
Acrimony: After the North York Borough Council approved a $1 million balanced 2017 budget with no tax increase at Tuesday’s meeting, things turned ugly.
The acrimony began when North York resident Christopher Wilhelm read a statement to the council calling for Hinkle’s resignation.
Wilhelm started an online petition last week calling for Hinkle to step down after she told him she would flash her breasts at him if he was going to continue recording borough meetings. Hinkle also told Wilhelm she would beat him with his prosthetic leg if his videos ended up online.
During his fight with cancer in 2010, Wilhelm had part of his leg amputated.
On Tuesday, Wilhelm, a volunteer with Liberty Fire Co.,, asked the other members of council to “do the right thing” and remove her from her position after it became clear Hinkle was not resigning.
“I’m asking my council members and the people that I serve next to to make the right choice. Do what is right for this community, please,” Wilhelm said.
After several minutes of heated arguments between Hinkle and members of the public, the council did not make a motion to accept Hinkle’s conditional resignation and moved on to other matters to finish the meeting.
Comments: At the conclusion of the meeting, Hinkle said she felt she was the victim of a witch hunt for the last week after Jackson made "totally false" and "very derogatory" comments to the media.
Hinkle said she wanted Jackson to take responsibility for his actions and threatened to take legal action against him if he did not retract statements he made last week.
Jackson told The York Dispatch that Hinkle had a pattern for this type of behavior and accused her of making sexually explicit comments to him as well.
After getting into an argument with Hinkle several months ago, Jackson said he went to the door to cool off, at which point Hinkle got close to him and asked, "Why can't we get along? If I rub my (breasts) on you, would that make you feel better?"
Jackson reiterated that accusation Tuesday when Hinkle asked him to explain what he said to media outlets.
Though she didn’t resign Tuesday, Hinkle said she will no longer take her seat at the council meetings and grabbed her nameplate before leaving.
The North York Borough Council did accept a resignation Tuesday night, however. Councilwoman Angi Kaltreider submitted her resignation letter, which was read at the meeting, though Kaltreider’s husband and fellow council member Chris Kaltreider said her resignation had nothing to do with the controversy surrounding Hinkle.