Moraine considers filling open council seat after longtime leader dies

Four candidates have applied to fill the vacant at-large Moraine City Council seat created by the death of Jim McGuire last month. FILE PHOTO
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Four candidates have applied to fill the vacant at-large Moraine City Council seat created by the death of Jim McGuire last month. FILE PHOTO

Four applicants for the vacant Moraine City Council seat created by last month’s death of Jim McGuire will be the topic of a special meeting tonight as the deadline for filling the post draws near.

Council is set to meet at 6 p.m. to consider Bob Allen, Rocky Bangert, Donald Burchett and Basil Tom Hicks for the at-large seat, one of two on Moraine’s seven-member legislative panel.

Moraine Mayor Elaine Allison said council members will meet in executive session to consider a replacement for McGuire, a three-term member who died March 26 at age 72.

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“We have had four qualified candidates apply for this vacancy and on the Thursday after each has been interviewed, council will determine whether or not to appoint someone to serve until the November election,” Allison said Wednesday in an email.

Council has 30 days from the time of the vacancy to fill the seat, according to the city’s charter. Regardless of whether it appoints a successor or not, according to the city a special election will be held in November to fill the unexpired term, which was on the ballot in 2017.

Allen, Bangert, Burchett and Hicks all filed one-page applications for the seat before the April 12 deadline, city records show. Applicants must be residents of Moraine for a minimum of three years and a qualified elector of the city under its charter guidelines.

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Allen has lived in Moraine for 55 years, Bangert for 12 years, Burchett for 30 years and Hicks has been a lifetime resident of the city, records say. None of the four have ever run for Moraine council seats, according to the Montgomery County Board of Elections’ website.

Only Burchett has served on any Moraine boards or commissions, according to city records. His application shows time on the city’s board of zoning appeals, as well as service on the records, charter review and planning commissions.

McGuire was elected to an at-large council seat in 2009, according to the elections board. He ran unopposed in re-election bids in 2013 and last year. Prior to council, he was on the board of zoning appeals for 10 years, eight of which he served as chairman.

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