Foster to serve on Greenwood City Council again

A deputy prosecutor will serve as a Greenwood City Council member for the second time in less than four years.

Drew Foster, a deputy prosecutor with the Johnson County Prosecutor’s Office, was chosen by precinct committee members to fill a seat vacated by Bob Dine during a Johnson County GOP caucus Thursday night at the Greenwood City Center. Dine resigned last month to accept a position with the Greenwood City Court.

Thursday’s caucus was initially scheduled to take place on Feb. 3, but was delayed due to a winter storm that dropped several inches of snow and ice on the county.

Four Greenwood residents applied for the seat — Foster, David Cox, Shane Cunningham and Ronald Palmer. Forty-nine precinct committee members were eligible to vote during the caucus, and 36 did, said Beth Boyce, Johnson County GOP Chair.

Foster was chosen after one round of voting. He received a simple majority of 32 votes. Cunningham received three votes and Cox received one. Palmer did not receive any votes and did not show up to the caucus. He did not notify party officials of his intent to not be there, so his name remained on the ballot for committee members, Boyce said.

A long-time Greenwood resident, Foster has worked for the prosecutor’s office for 18 years. During the caucus, he touted his previous experience on both the city council and Board of Zoning Appeals, which he still serves on.

Foster was first elected to the council via a caucus in 2018, filling an at-large seat formerly held by Brent Corey, who resigned due to a criminal investigation.

During his previous stint as a council member, Foster helped pass the city’s nuisance ordinance, which requires that all places of lodging have a city license, and outlines procedures for probation and revoking the license for those that have a high number of calls for police, fire, code and health department violations. He also helped pass the city’s riverfront district ordinance, which opens the door to more restaurants and bars that want to serve alcohol.

Foster also ran for a full-term on the city council in 2019, but was not nominated. Being able to serve on the city council again is a privilege, he said.

“I was disappointed when I lost the primary election, but I’m not the type to stay down when I get knocked down. I just got back into it,” Foster said.

This time around, he plans to address crime and property rights, he said.

“Things are being built again; roads are being worked on,” Foster said. “I want to see the tax base grow, the city grow and attract light manufacturing jobs because those bring better pay, better benefits and things of that nature.”

Foster is expected to serve until Dec. 31, 2023, the end of Dine’s elected term, unless he runs for a full term in next year’s municipal elections.