Perrysburg votes for newcomer for council PDF Print E-mail
Written by PETER KUEBECK Sentinel Staff Writer   
Wednesday, 29 May 2013 10:31
PERRYSBURG - City Council worked through a little gridlock Tuesday night and appointed a new councilwoman.
The body voted 4-2 to approve the appointment of political newcomer Sara Weisenburger to a vacant council seat during a special meeting.
The seat, previously held by Maria Ermie, who resigned in April, is among three up for a vote this year.
"I feel overwhelmed," said Weisenburger after council's vote. "Not because I can't do the job. I wanted it to be smoother than this. I have no doubt I'm going to work my hardest."
Five applicants in total had applied for the post. In addition to Weisenburger, they included Grant Garn, James Matuszak, John Spore and Rebecca Williams.
Council had "found ourselves in an unusual position," last week, said Council President Joe Lawless. Council was deadlocked 3-3 on approving Weisenburger at last week's regular council meeting. In such cases, the mayor is unable to cast a tie-breaking vote. The special meeting was called to determine how to solve the issue.
At the meeting, Lawless re-nominated Weisenburger, and explained that if her nomination was not approved, then each of the five individual applicants for the seat would be voted on individually twice, in hopes of a majority vote. If that also failed, then Mayor Nelson Evans would use his charter-granted ability to name a successor to the seat after it had been vacant for 30 days. That time would have been up on Thursday.
However, Weisenburger was approved in the first round, after John Kevern, who had voted "no" on her appointment in favor of Williams last week, changed his vote.
Speaking of Williams, who has served on the Way Library Board, the Planning Commission, and is currently a member of the Board of Zoning Appeals, Kevern said that she "has superior qualifications" but "unfortunately, her experience on council would be short-lived." Williams, he said, will not be running for council this fall.
He noted that Weisenburger, despite being "short on civic knowledge and experience" brought positive qualities to the seat and, since she has announced a run for council this fall, she emerged as the "practical choice" and "a viable candidate in November."
Councilmen Tom Mackin and Tim McCarthy, who also backed Williams last week, were the only "no" votes Tuesday night.
The last council vacancy appointment was Todd Grayson, who was unanimously approved in 2011 to fill the seat left by first-term councilman Joe Rutherford. Rutherford resigned from council after taking a new job near Columbus.

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