Local Republicans seek Third Ward council candidates

By on September 7, 2011

By: GARY P. KLINGER Review Correspondent gpklinger@yahoo.com, Staff Writer

"The best way to get involved in government is … to become a part of it and try to make a difference."

With that call to action, local Republican committeewoman and borough council member Susan Rowe challenged those registered as Republican and living in Ephrata Borough’s third ward to consider becoming a candidate for borough council.

The Republican Committee is in search of a candidate for this fall’s election in order to fill the remaining two years of former council member Wendy Perillo’s term. Perillo resigned from council earlier this year for personal reasons.

According to Rowe, the candidate must be a resident of the third ward, a registered Republican and must have resided in the third ward for at least one year prior to the election.

According to borough code, since Wendy resigned before the end of her second year, but after the primary deadline, her seat is filled by borough council only until the end of the current calendar year. Both parties’ local committees then can submit a name to be placed on the ballot for the November election to fill the remaining two years of Wendy’s term. That seat would come up for re-election again in 2013 (to be seated on council in January 2014).

Currently the seat is being filled by George DiIlio, who was selected by a majority of council members to fill the seat until the fall election.

"There is no government or previous political experience necessary to sit on borough council," explained Rowe. "The only requirement is a desire to serve the citizens of the Ephrata Borough community. I might also say the person should be willing to listen to citizen feedback and complaints. The elected individual will be given an orientation of the borough and its components and how they operate, as well as a brief orientation from a council person’s perspective. Fellow council members would be more than willing to answer questions or help the new member through the process."

Most meetings are held on Monday evenings. The first two weeks of the month are full council work sessions, where items to be presented for vote are discussed among council and with attending citizens and then voted on the following week. The third and fourth Monday are set aside for various committee meetings. As a member of borough council, the individual will sit on three committees, one of which that person will chair. Committee meetings usually last approximately one hour. At various times, additional meetings are held, but they are usually brief.

"The total amount of time devoted to business coming before council is really up to each individual" added Rowe. "Some council members do research and investigations on their own time, others base decisions solely on committee recommendations, staff comments and input from citizens."

Rowe noted that while council members volunteer for service, the rewards are numerous.

"As I near the end of my second year on council, I am so glad I made the decision to serve," stated Rowe. "I have learned so much regarding municipal government. I think as a whole our council works very well together; we don’t always agree on the business that comes before us, and while that does make for some lively discussions, we respect each other’s opinions. Although there were times at the start of my term when I felt overwhelmed, I find the experience very rewarding."

Any interested candidates should notify Tony Kilkuskie at 733-7607 or Susan Rowe at 738-1859 for more information on becoming a candidate.

Gary P. Klinger welcomes comments and questions at gpklinger@yahoo.com. More THIRD WARD, page A16

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