On Tuesday, mayor Ray Pacheco presented outgoing city attorney John Henley with a plaque for his years of service and received a standing ovation from those present at the meeting.

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Henley will retire from his work as the city's attorney on Dec. 9 after working for the city for around four years.

Pacheco, after reading a prepared statement about Henley, spoke personally about the impact he has had.

"John has been nothing short of amazing as our city attorney," Pacheco said. "His commitment to our community and to the city and to keeping us safe, understanding that. But the rule and the understanding of justice and law and the equality that you brought and from all sides. We really appreciate you and we're gonna miss you.

Council member Steve Cathey said Henley has been helpful in providing advice on two issues.

"I just want to thank you for all the time and effort you and your office put in on the licensing for the massage therapist, which I know was a big thing for them, and I know you've put in an enormous amount of time on the nondiscrimination ordinance and I comend you for that as well," Cathey said. "Trying to wade through all the pros and the cons and the ins and the outs. Plus all the other things you do, but those are the two biggies that I can remember. So thank you very much for that."

Vice mayor Bruce Knell said that his wife being an attorney gave him a better connection to Henley.

"John, my wife being an attorney gave me an immediate connection to you which I've enjoyed immensely and all the private meetings in the backroom of your office were well wanted and warranted and we're really gonna miss you," Knell said. "Those are big shoes to fill. We've got a good interum coming in and it looks like we've got some very good applicants for that position. So hopefully we can move on without missing a beat, but we will certainly miss you, I will. So thank you for your service."

Council member Amber Pollock said that she's appreciated the help Henley has given to her while she's been on the council.

"Thank you so much John, I've leaned heavily on you over the last two years since I've been on council to make sure that, for my part that I'm bringing to the table, it's always done under good advisement from you," Pollock said. "So thank you so much for your time and attention and best wishes to you and your family.

Council member Kyle Gamroth said that he also appreciates the help Henley has given to him while he's been on the council.

"Like Amber, I've pestered you a lot over my two years on council, just always wanting to do things to the letter of the law and everything like that," Gamroth said. "You've been a tremendous resource, always willing to help and very responsive. So thank you, appreciate all your service, and good luck and enjoy your retirement."

Council member Michael McIntosh said he's enjoyed the time spent working with Henley on the city council and the planning and zoning commission.

"John, even though I've only been on council for a short time, it's been very enjoyable working with you there as well as on the planning and zoning commission. So thank you for all your hard work and good luck in retirement."

Council member Kenyne Humphrey said that it was great that the city hired Henley.

"I'm a little offended that I just get back for a couple of months and then you leave. But it was great when we hired you, it's always been great, so thank you and you will be missed."

Council member Lisa Engebretsen said she appreciated the work Henley has done.

"Thank you so much for your time and your wisdom and your service," Engebretsen said. "I appreciate it."

While most of the audience was there to speak about the nondiscrimination ordinance that the council ended up passing, Henley did receive a standing ovation from members of the audience.

During public comment, Representative Pat Sweeney of House District 58 said that Henley has had an impact at the state level as well.

"I just would like to chime in on John and his retirement. The state is definitely a better place," Sweeney said. "His efforts on surface water on behalf of not just the city of Casper, and his expertise in flowing that through the three-plus years of the legislative process to finally get that done were immense. So his expertise while totally valuable to our community was also and is long-term standing for this state. So thank you, John."

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