New council sets new tone

SALINEVILLE- A new, and seemingly less turbulent, era began Monday night for the village as newly-elected Salineville council members set to work electing one another to various positions on council during the annual reorganizational meeting.

It was the first meeting for new councilmen Brian Tedeschi, Nancy Needham, John “Buck” Higgins, and Jim Wilson. They fill the seats left by Zeb Locklear, Tom Hays, Jim Howdershelt, and Rick Beadle.

Locklear, Hays, and Howdershelt opted not to seek re-election, while Beadle failed to obtain enough votes to win a seat. Council members Sally Keating and Brian Zaverl are the only two members remaining from the previous council. Zaverl was appointed by council last month after Wayne Lieshman resigned. Keating was appointed in 2012.

Mayor Mary Smith welcomed the new council members with an optimistic greeting.

“I want to start off welcoming the new council members,” said Smith. “I look forward to meeting our goals and making changes for the betterment of Salineville.”

Before council could proceed with the meeting they accepted the resignation of Needham as council clerk. Needham had volunteered as clerk for both council and the village’s Board of Public Affairs before being elected.

Council accepted Needham’s resignation and thanked her for her service. However, with no new clerk hired, council had no choice but to reappoint Needham to serve as clerk in a temporary capacity. Council unanimously passed a motion for Needham to take meeting minutes, temporarily, “pending her replacement.” Needham abstained from the vote.

Smith explained a candidate she had interviewed for the position of council and BPA clerk had declined the position at the last minute, leaving no one except Needham able to carry out the clerk’s duties for the new year’s first meeting.

The next order of business was appointing a council president. Higgins motioned to re- elect Keating, and the motion was approved by unanimous consent. She was appointed council president in 2013.

Council also opted to retain Attorney Andrew Beech as legal counsel for the village in 2014. Smith recommended renewing Beech as village solicitor with the same terms and conditions as were agreed upon in 2013. The motion was approved unanimously.

In other business, Smith made the following committee appointments:

* Safety Committee: Higgins, Keating, Needham

* Finance Committee: Keating, Higgins, Tedeschi

* Buildings and Health Committee: Wilson, Zaverl, Tedeschi

* Properties Committee: Higgins, Keating, Needham

* Streets and Street Lighting Committee: Tedeschi, Wilson, Keating

* Ordinance and Resolution Committee: Needham, Wilson, Zaverl

* Parks and Recreation Committee: Zaverl, Needham, Wilson.