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Rettig Resigns Post As Johnson County Supervisor

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Courtesy of Rettig for Supervisor Facebook Page
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Johnson County Supervisor Janelle Rettig announced her resignation over the weekend, citing in part personal health concerns. Her term runs through 2022.

Johnson County Supervisor Janelle Rettig is resigning her position from the board. Rettig made the announcement over the weekend, citing in part personal health concerns that stem from Lyme Disease.

“As you may know, for a long time I have had headaches and aches originally caused by Lyme disease,” Rettig wrote in a Facebook post. “It’s time to try to focus on reducing stress and pain."

Rettig was first appointed to the board in 2009, followed by several successful campaigns to keep the seat. Her current term runs through 2022.

In her resignation statement, Rettig said that she never intended for the post to be a “life-long role for me” and said she specifically wanted to step down as the coronavirus crisis was slowing.

“I believe people serving in policy making positions should come in to make a difference, work hard and then move on,” Rettig wrote. “I’ve known I wouldn’t be running for re-election for years, but with a lot of thought and discussion over the last year, I decided it was best to move on as soon as the COVID disaster was concluding.”

Despite a flurry of vaccination efforts by county health officials and scores of providers, Johnson County’s number of new cases has been on the rise recently. Hospitalizations have also been increasing, with a 15 percent change reported over the past 14 days, according to an analysis by the New York Times, which rates the county as being at a “very high risk of exposure” to the virus.

Among the work that Rettig said she was most proud of includes expanding trail access, helping secure finding to reconstruct the historic Sutliff Bridge in rural Johnson County following the 2008 flood, and raising the county’s minimum wage, which was steadily increased beginning in 2015. In 2017, a bill signed into law by Gov. Terry Branstad rendered the local ordinance unenforceable, though supervisors continued to encourage employers to raise their wages.

Rettig said she and her wife Robin Butler have no plans of leaving Johnson County, but are looking forward to spending more time on their bicycles and motorcycles, reading, and playing poker when it’s safe to do so. Rettig said it has been an honor to serve Johnson County and to collaborate with its many cities, communities and partner agencies.

“I will be cheering Johnson County and our great cities on for the island of hope they are in an ever concerning and extremist Iowa,” Rettig said.

Rettig was one of four female members on the five member board, made up of all Democrats. County officials will determine whether to fill the vacancy by appointment or special election.