CHAPEL HILL – Carrboro Alderwoman Lydia Lavelle is running unopposed for mayor this election season. Presuming she’s elected, a seat on the Board will then be open. It will likely be filled through an appointment process; however, the Board could instead pass a resolution calling for a special election.
At WCHL’s Carrboro Board of Aldermen Candidate Forum Monday, hopefuls were asked if they weren’t elected, would they consider putting their name forward to replace Lavelle.
***Listen to WCHL’s 2013 Carrboro Board of Aldermen Candidates Forum***
They were also asked what characteristics they would look for in finding a new Board member.
The five candidates competing for three open seats on the Board include incumbents Sammy Slade, Jacquelyn Gist and Randee Haven-O’Donnell. The challengers are Kurt Stolka, Vice-Chair of Carrboro’s Transportation Advisory Board, and Al Vickers, a former member of the Solid Waste Advisory Board with a Ph. D. in environmental science. Vickers was absent from the Forum Monday due to a prior engagement out of the country.
Haven-O’Donnell said she would want a possible appointee to have served on a Town advisory board. She added that she hadn’t considered the “what if?” of not being re-elected.
“If I’m not elected, would I put my name in? Well, you know, if I’m not elected, it really makes a statement. I hadn’t been thinking about it. I’m a competitor,” Haven-O’Donnell said.
Gist said she wanted a person who would bring a fresh perspective to the Board. She said a person with a different background and a diverse skill set would be beneficial.
“Somebody who really loves and gets Carrboro, I guess for me that is the bottom line,” Gist said. “If I didn’t win, would I put my name in? I don’t know.”
Slade said he wanted someone with a passion for Carrboro, with a history of involvement in Town issues. As to throwing his name in for appointment if he weren’t re-elected, Slade said he would likely not out of respect the voter’s decision.
“I agree with Randee, I probably would take this to be a sign that if I lost, maybe I’m not the right person,” Slade said.
Stolka suggested that Board members would consider appointing the candidate that was in fourth place with vote totals to replace Lavelle’s empty seat. He was the only candidate to firmly state that he would seek to be appointment if he were not elected.
“If there’s a chance that I am not in then yeah I probably will throw my hat in the ring because I really want to help change this Town and make a positive impact,” Stolka said.
In the case of an appointment process or a special election, theoretically a new batch of hopefuls seeking a seat on the Board could put their names forward.