Protheroe announces retirement from Falls City

FALLS CITY — Domenica Protheroe, the soon-to-be retired Falls City city clerk, left some parting advice for city leaders.

Protheroe’s last day is Thursday. She’s worked for the city for nearly seven years and received a standing ovation for her service at the council meeting.

“The one message I would give — and it’s not a new message by any stretch — is that we need to increase existing revenue and find new revenue because costs go up exponentially,” she said during Thursday’s council meeting. “Without doing that, we will lose more services, and a good example of that, unfortunately, is the library.”

She said encouraging development could be one way of bringing in more revenue.

“What we do know about Falls City, is that we are the most beautiful city in Polk County. We have a river. We have natural beauty. We have a really welcoming community. They’re strong and they’re supportive,” she said. “I think over time, the word’s going to get out and we are going to see more (growth).”

She added helping the federal government get a better count of the city’s population for the 2020 Census could increase resources sent to the city.

Protheroe believes the official population number of 950 is low, by as much as 100.

“If it were 1,050, over five years, we would get $30,000 more in the gas tax,” she said, citing one example of state or federal revenue sources that are distributed based on population.

Cody DeCamp, the city’s new city clerk, will assist census workers with their surveys, she said.

Ungricht and Protheroe appealed to council members to encourage people to participate in the count.

“My only suggestion is the council create a PR plan to make it important for citizens to respond to that census worker, because if there’s not an open door when that census worker gets there, they are not going be counted,” Protheroe said.

Protheroe said she’s been grateful to work for Falls City and with the council for the final stop in her working life.

“You love know I love you. I just can’t thank you enough for my seven years here. It’s just been an incredible experience,” she said. “I’m glad this is my last job. It’s a perfect job to exit from because I really don’t want to go, and that is a good way to leave.”

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