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Trafford rec board dwindles to 4 members

| Wednesday, March 27, 2013, 9:01 p.m.

The Trafford Recreation Board is down by three members, and nobody seems to be interested in filling the openings.

With only four active representatives remaining, council might consider reducing the number of board members from seven to five, said rec board vice president Nick Petrucci.

Petrucci said he and council President Rich Laird recently broached the topic because of the board's difficulty in having a quorum for meetings. The borough bumped the number of seats from nine to seven a few years ago.

“I can't object to that,” Petrucci said of a possible shrinking of the board. “Look at what we have.”

Last week, Councilman John Daykon went so far as to question whether Trafford needs a rec board amid a council discussion about nobody applying by a March 8 deadline to fill a seat vacated by Councilwoman Vicki Megon.

Council also accepted Tammi DeMarchi's resignation last week and removed Frank Laspin, who hadn't attended meetings since last summer.

“We have a problem here,” Daykon said last week. “Nobody wants to be on the rec board.”

The rec board's relationship with council has grown contentious over the past year, leading its members to seek a meeting with some council members to hash out the issues.

Chairman Tom Baric said the two boards need to discuss how the borough pursues grants for renovation projects, among other budgetary matters.

Board members were agitated further Monday night when their scheduled meeting had to be conducted in the lobby of the borough building because council chambers was locked.

“The lack of respect for the recreation board is really trickling down, and it's just bull,” said member Destiny Wall.

The rec board has made one change to try to lessen any conflict by removing Cheryl Petersen as its liaison to council. At the past two council meetings, Daykon has quarreled with Petersen, who is running for a Democratic nomination for council this spring.

Daykon said Petersen might have a grudge against him because she initially refused access to a new borough purchasing card after complaining about council having control of the recreation fund.

Councilwoman Rita Windsor said the situation is getting “goofy.”

“This is a meeting that we need to have to work these things out,” she said.

Chris Foreman is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at cforeman@tribweb.com.

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