North Irwin council reorganizes

| Friday, Jan. 17, 2014, 12:39 p.m.

North Irwin council's leadership changed hands during its reorganization meeting as they continue to seek someone to fill a vacant seat on council.

Council voted unanimously on Jan. 6 to elect Michael Schade as its new president. He replaces Kimberly Macalus, who chose not to seek election. The new vice president of council is Ronald Brown, who also received a unanimous vote. He replaces John McIntyre, who won a four-year term.

North Irwin's seven-member council began the new year with an open seat for a two-year term.

The vacancy occurred after election results where certified by the Westmoreland County election board.

Edwin “Bo” Anthony, who has previously served on council, was elected in November by write-in votes to both a four-year term and a two-year term. He chose to serve the four-year term.

According to the borough code, council has 30 days to fill the vacancy with somebody interested in the post, said manager Adele Nehas.

North Irwin residents interested in filling a vacant seat on council have until Feb. 5 to submit a letter of interest to the borough.

If nobody steps forward, the borough's vacancy board will have 15 days once the deadline is reached to appoint a registered voter to fill the post, according to Adele Nehas, the borough manager.

The vacancy board consists of the six members of council and resident Jennifer McCutcheon, who was re-appointed on Jan. 6, to serve a two-yer term on the board.

If nobody steps forward to fill the seat, council must form a vacancy board that will have 15 days to find a resident interested in serving on council.

If the seat remains open, the vacancy board must petition the Court of Common Pleas to appoint a resident who is registered to vote in the community.

Beth Lechman, voting systems coordinator for the Westmoreland County Election Bureau, said filling a vacant seat for a two-year term is less complicated that the four-year seats.

“If the borough can find someone, council would simply have to appoint them to the two-year term,” she said. “But four-year terms can only be filled for two years. After that, the person who is appointed would have to go through the process of getting on the ballot and running for the remainder of the term.”

Nehas said anyone who is interested in filling the vacancy on council should submit a letter of interest to the municipality. The address is: North Irwin Town Hall, 21 Second St., North Irwin, Pa. 15642.

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