By Frank Lewis

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Remember the old premise, what if someone threw a war and no one showed up? Well, there was a variation on that theme Monday evening. What if someone threw a City Council meeting, and no one showed up? When people walked into the Portsmouth City Council chambers Monday evening Third Ward Councilman Kevin E. Johnson and City Clerk Diana Ratliff were the only two people behind the courtroom fence, seated at a table.

As Johnson sat, gavel in hand, Sixth Ward Councilman Jeff Kleha did show up right before the meeting was scheduled, but with no quorum (4 members), Johnson could only take one point of action – gavel the meeting to open and call for adjournment, which he did.

Turns out the circumstances were not unexpected. Both Johnson and Ratliff knew a quorum would not be present, citing several council members with illnesses and others who had legitimate excuses.

Ratliff said the items on the agenda would most likely be acted on at the Dec. 14, 2015 meeting, which is the next scheduled meeting.

City Manager Derek K. Allen and City Auditor Trent Williams, as well as Health Commissioner, Chris Smith were in attendance.

Johnson was able to laugh at the situation on Tuesday morning when he told the Daily Times – “I’m going to text Kleha and tell him he talked too much last night.”

Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.