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Richfield Council selects Hudak as president

1/10/2013 - West Side Leader
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By Jeff Gorman

Councilman Richard Hudak will lead Richfield Village Council as its president in 2013 as a result of Council’s organizational meeting Jan. 2.

Hudak was the vice president in 2012 and Mike Wheeler was president. Hudak last served as president in 2009.

Council voted in Andy Ellis as this year’s vice president. Both Hudak and Ellis were the only nominees for the position.

Council also appointed Melinda Mallari Swan to be the acting clerk of Council until a permanent replacement can be named for Carolyn Sullivan, who retired last month.

Later, Council agreed to hire Sullivan to assist in the transition process at a cost of up to $3,000 for up to three months.

Councilman Ralph Waszak will take over for Hank Novak as Council’s representative on the Planning and Zoning Commission.

“I want to thank Hank for doing a great job,” Hudak said. “Ralph has filled these shoes before and I know he will do an admirable job.”

Usually, Council members receive committee assignments at the organizational meeting. However, Hudak said he would hold off until he could speak with the Council members since he said he did not want to assume he would be elected president.

Looking ahead to 2013, Hudak said one challenge facing Richfield’s government will be making necessary capital improvements while dealing with a tight budget.

“I’d also like us to continue to talk in detail about a recreation center and feasible ways of funding it,” he said. “I would also like to continue to work in harmony with this Council. I think this group works very well together.”

Council convened again Jan. 7 for a public hearing and a special meeting.

The public hearing included a lengthy discussion of an ordinance that would allow Council to review use variances that are approved by the Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA). Council did not take action on it.

“It appears Council is going to adopt some of this ordinance, even as a stop-gap until it can be determined by Council if use variances should be done away with altogether,” Hudak stated.

During the special Council meeting, Council re-appointed Robert Lehman for a four-year term on the Human Services Commission.

Council also appointed Teresa Kovak to the Parks and Recreation Board for a five-year term. She will take the seat previously held by Nagwa Ahlborg.

Richard Rauch and Paul Swan were each re-appointed to new three-year terms on the Cemetery Board.

Council also appointed Jim Turk to the BZA for a five-year term, replacing Jim Voltz.

Charles “Pat” Norris moved from the BZA to the Planning and Zoning Commission for a four-year term, taking the seat previously held by Pete Schueler.

Roger Swan will fill the rest of Norris’ BZA term, which runs through the end of 2015.

The next Richfield Village Council meeting is scheduled for Jan. 15 at 8 p.m. at Town Hall, 4410 W. Streetsboro Road.

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