McCaig nominated to fill PT Council vacancy

Published Aug 14, 2013 at 11:14 am (Updated Aug 14, 2013 at 11:14 am)

Following the unexpected death of Councilman Robert Atkison in July, Peters Township solicited inquiries from residents interested in filling the vacancy through the end of 2013.

Initially, eight residents applied with one, Richard A. Caporal Jr. not being interviewed. No reason was given for not interviewing Caporal. Before Council voted Aug. 12, another resident, Otto Szabo Jr. asked that his name be removed from consideration.

Of the remaining six, Councilwoman Monica Merrell nominated Frank Kosir Jr. Councilman James Berquist nominated Michael McCaig, who served on council from 2008-09 until he was defeated in an election by Gary Steigel Jr. Steigel continues to serve on the seven-member council.

During a roll-call vote, McCaig, a Republican, was elected to fill the vacancy. Berquist, Robert Lewis, David Ball and Frank Arcuri voted for McCaig’s nomination. Merrell and Steigel voted for Kosir.

McCaig did not attend the meeting.

Others who applied were Harry J. Verlato, A. Scott Kleinschnitz, Dale F. Griffith and William Furedy.

McCaig will serve until the end of 2013 and, if he chooses, will run during a special election.

Merrell said there could be a potential conflict of interest if McCaig, who advised council on bond issues, was required to vote. Michael Silvestri, township manager, said he did not expect Council to address any bond issues before the end of the year.

No date was announced as to when McCaig would be sworn in, but the ceremony could possibly take place as soon as the next council meeting Aug. 26.

Following the meeting, Arcuri said he felt McCaig was a good choice because the budget process for 2014 will begin soon and McCaig is “well versed” when it comes to those decisions.

To honor Atkison, who served on council for more than 20 years and who was active in the ambulance service, the township will name the eastern entrance to the municipal complex near the clock and the library, Atkison Way.

The entrance, which currently has no name, is not an official township street, but members felt honoring Atkison in this manner was appropriate.

The entrance will have a street sign that will be unveiled at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 26. Silvestri said Atkison’s family, friends and state representatives will attend.

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