Walbridge: Show up or step down PDF Print E-mail
Written by DEBBIE ROGERS Sentinel Staff Writer   
Saturday, 07 September 2013 08:10
WALBRIDGE - A council committee is recommending passing an ordinance regulating attendance by village officials at meetings.
At Wednesday's council meeting, Jan Sawaya, chairwoman of the personnel and human resources committee and council president, asked that the solicitor prepare the ordinance.
It states: "Should any elected official (mayor or member of council) be absent from as many as four regular or special meetings in any 12-month period, they shall thereby forfeit their seat, unless such absence is authorized and excused by council."
After the meeting, Sawaya said the new ordinance should prevent a situation like one earlier this year when Mayor Dan Wilczynski forfeited his seat over too many missed meetings.
"People who are elected to serve the public should be here," she said.
Wilczynski quit in January after Solicitor Brian Ballenger told him there was an opinion supporting now-mayor Ed Kolanko's research that said elected officials must attend at least 60 percent of the meetings in any two-year period.
Ballenger wasn't at Wednesday's meeting, and Sawaya said his opinion is needed on this new, proposed ordinance.
She added that the ordinance isn't just directed at the mayoral spot.
"We want all of our council members to be here, too," Sawaya said.
Also at the meeting, council:
• Approved an ordinance as an emergency to apply for an Ohio Public Works Commission grant for Union Street improvements, from Dixon to Martindale streets. This is a $524,000 project with a 50-percent match from the village. There was a first reading on the ordinance at the last council meeting.
• Heard from Sue Hart-Douglas, chairwoman of the parks, recreation and community events committee, that trick or treat in the village will be Oct. 31 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. A representative of the centennial committee had asked that trick or treat be moved to Nov. 1 to accommodate a costume contest. Hart-Douglas said committee members want to keep the Halloween date, but will send out a flyer at Lake Elementary advertising the contest.
• Heard resident Larry Boday, who is running for council in November, question why a personnel and human resources committee meeting set for Aug. 28 at 6 p.m. was moved to Aug. 27 at 5 p.m. He has been a proponent of council having all committee meetings in the evening so more residents can attend. Sawaya said the meeting had to be moved to accommodate a councilman, and that 24-hours notice was given. She added that the majority of all council committee meetings are held in the late afternoon or early evening.

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