Council vacancy stirs up Rossford
Written by DAVID DUPONT Sentinel Staff Writer
Tuesday, 10 December 2013 11:14
ROSSFORD - The question about who would be City Council president was answered Monday night, and the process for deciding who will fill a vacant seat was outlined.
Larry Oberdorf rescinded his statement saying he intended to resign as council president made during a contentious council meeting last week.
Mayor Neil MacKinnon announced Oberdorf's intention to stay as council president. That wasn't enough for Councilman Greg Marquette who said he wanted further explanation from Oberdorf about why he said he would resign.
Oberdorf said he was "tied up in the emotions of the state of affairs."
Oberdorf proposed seeking applicants to fill the vacancy created by the death on Thanksgiving of Chuck Duricek, who had just been re-elected to serve a third term.
Newly-elected councilman Dan Wagner, with support from Marquette, had argued the vacancy should be filled by Robert Densic, who came in fifth in a six-candidate race for four seats.
Monday Oberdorf said he was upset that members of council had objected to a well-thought-out proposal without considering "the impact down the road."
In the past council has filled vacancies in both ways.
Since Oberdorf had already been elected to another term as council president and had never submitted a formal letter of resignation, no action needed to be taken for him to retain his position.
Densic, who said he is applying to fill the seat, garnered the support of several speakers during the public comment section of the meeting.
Resident Steve Vidra, a former member of council, complained that Densic had "spent money, campaigned then you want to throw him aside."
Resident Erin Robinson said Densic, as the candidate with the next-highest vote total, should get it.
She accused Councilwoman Caroline Eckel of being hypocritical because Eckel was first appointed to council as the next highest vote-getter to fill a vacancy.
Eckel said that last week her position was that it was too soon make a decision to fill the vacancy. She said she wanted to wait until after Duricek's funeral.
Eckel did, after some hesitation, vote in favor of seeking applications.
Pat Carson, another former councilman, also weighed in for Densic.
Debbie Zuchowski said Densic wasn't the only losing candidate, and that both should be considered.
Former Police Chief Dennis Foy came in sixth in the council race.
Those wishing to apply for the position have until Friday at 4:30 p.m. to file at city offices. Council will meet Dec. 16 at 7 p.m. to discuss how to proceed, and then interview candidates at 7:30 p.m. Council indicated they would then discuss their decision in executive session.
The applicant appointed would serve two years until the next regular council election in November, 2015.