Resignation leaves village with another seat to fill

President favors appointing former official but trustees say board should seek applications

Rudy McCormick

Dob Dohrwardt
Ozaukee Press Staff

The Fredonia Village Board is seeking candidates to fill a vacant seat after Trustee Neil Wagner resigned last month.

During the June 7 Village Board meeting, Village President Don Dohrwardt suggested appointing former trustee Rudy McCormick, who lost his seat in the April election.

But other trustees said the board owes it to the public to seek applications for the position.

“There could be a lot of interest in this seat, and we should explore it,” Trustee Richard Abegglen said. “We should be fair to the community and the people we serve.”

Trustee Joshua Haas agreed, and asked if there is a standard procedure for filling a vacant seat in the middle of a term.

Dohrwardt said there isn’t a clear procedure for appointment. He said he suggested appointing McCormick because it would expedite the process.

“I don’t foresee a group of people that would be interested, but we can test the waters to see what’s out there,” Dohrwardt said. “Rudy was very recently vetted and put through the process. We would have to have a quality candidate who could challenge him.”

McCormick was appointed to the board in October 2017 to fill a vacancy left by the resignation of Lisa Dohrwardt. Haas and Abegglen also applied for the position. 

But in the April election, in which five candidates were vying for three seats on the Village Board, McCormick lost to Haas and Abegglen, as well as incumbent Jill Bertram.

Out of the 681 votes cast in the election,  Hass received 383 (26.4%), Bertram garnered 376 (26.4%) and Abegglen received  274 votes (19.3%).

McCormick received 212 votes (14.9%) and Daniel Paulus garnered 170 (11.95%). 

According to officials, Wagner resigned last month for health reasons. He was appointed to the board in September 2017 to fill a vacancy. The person appointed to replace him will serve the remainder of his term, which expires in April 2019.

Trustee applications can be found on the village’s website at Applications should be returned to Fredonia Village Hall at 242 Fredonia Ave.

The deadline for applying is noon Thursday, June 21.

The Village Board plans to appoint a trustee at its July meeting. That meeting is scheduled for July 5 but could be rescheduled because of the Fourth of July holiday. 

Applicants must be at least 18 years old, a U.S. citizen and resident of the village.

The board meets the first and third Thursday of the month at 7 p.m.

Each trustee must serve on at least one committee.

Members of the Village Board serve two-year terms.




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