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Published: Wednesday, 1/30/2008

Sylvania City Council elects president, moves to fill vacancy

BY JANET ROMAKER
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Keith Haddad has literally shifted his position on Sylvania City Council.

After he was unanimously elected as council president, he moved one seat over to fill the chair vacated by the recent resignation of Barbara Sears.

A veteran council member who was re-elected in November, Mr. Haddad was the only council member nominated for the position of president and was elected to the post.

As president, Mr. Haddad's duties will include serving as acting mayor when the mayor cannot fulfill his duties.

Mr. Haddad was appointed Aug. 2, 1993, to fill a seat that opened when a council member retired, to a term ending Dec. 31, 1995. He has been on council continuously since then. He served as council president in 2002 and 2003.

Mrs. Sears resigned Jan. 15 shortly before she was sworn into office as Lucas County's newest state representative. She had been elected to serve as president during council's first meeting of the new year on Jan. 3.

Mayor Craig Stough said during the council meeting last week that he cannot remember when a city of Sylvania resident ever held that statehouse seat. The city, he said, has had "wonderful representation in the past," and he anticipates that will continue with Mrs. Sears as state representative.

At the mayor's request, council members agreed to present a resolution to honor her during their next session.

Mrs. Sears' switch from Sylvania Council president to state representative was part of a seat shuffle that began when U.S. Rep. Paul Gillmor died in September. Mrs. Sears replaced Mark Wagoner of Ottawa Hills, who was sworn in as the newest state senator representing the 2nd District.

As the representative in the 46th House District, Mrs. Sears will represent the western Toledo suburbs.

The only person to file for the seat, she faces no competition in the Republican primary. She likely will vie in November against Sylvania Township attorney Darlene Dunn who is unopposed for the Democratic nomination.

Mayor Stough noted that resumes and letters of interest from Sylvania residents interested in filling the council vacancy are being accepted.

Council has 30 days to fill the seat; after that, the mayor would make the appointment. The term runs to Dec. 31, 2009.

Mr. Stough said it would be up to Mr. Haddad, as council president, to determine the procedure for filling the vacancy after resumes and letters of interest are submitted. Deadline for applications is 4 p.m. today.

Mr. Haddad suggested that council's committee-of-the-whole could conduct interviews of the candidates on Monday, and said he hopes council can make a decision that night.

Council set the committee-of-the-whole session for 6 p.m. Monday.



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