Johnstown Independent

Johnstown Village Council

Five submit applications for open seat


Five people are seeking appointment to the nonpartisan Johnstown Village Council following the resignation of Thomas Fagan.

Clerk of Council Teresa Monroe received the letters of interest by the Dec. 13 deadline. It's not clear when council will name Fagan's successor, though.

"We're really looking for someone who's very interested in the village and someone who wants to have a vision for the village down the road," Councilwoman Sharon Hendren said. "That person is someone who will really need to put some time and effort into it and understand what council does."

The applicants are former council member Joyce Priest Evans, who was defeated in November, David Barr, Rebecca Sparks, Bill Dyer and Cheryl Robertson.

Hendren, Mayor Sean Staneart, Carol VanDeest and William VanGundy were the four winners in the November election. Staneart was the top vote-getter with 438 votes.

In October, council appointed Robert Orsini to fill the vacancy left by longtime council member and former mayor Kevin Riffe, who moved to Liberty Township. Orsini will serve the remainder of Riffe's term, which expires Dec. 31, 2015.

The council comprises seven nonpartisan members who serve at large for a term of four years. The mayor is elected by council members for a period of two years.

According to the village charter, If council fails to fill the vacancy within 30 days, the mayor has 15 days to appoint a successor. Fagan, who no longer lives in the village, resigned Dec. 1.

Staneart couldn't be reached for comment, but according to the charter, he would be responsible for filling position if council is unsuccessful as of Dec. 31.

The Alexandria Village Council will have two open seats to fill in 2014.

Council candidates Karen Holt and Michael Miller were uncontested in the November election, when voters also approved the village's 4-mill levy by a 70-50 vote, or 58 to 42 percent.

"You have to listen to everybody because you're elected to serve the people," said Scott Hutchinson, who did not seek another term. "You set there and weigh it out. You won't ever please them all. Somebody always will be upset."

The village also will have to fill positions on the park and zoning boards, Hutchinson said.