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Salem city council hoping to resolve voting impasse and fill vacancy

Posted by Terri Ogan  January 8, 2013 01:12 PM

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After last week's voting marathon, Salem city councilors are hoping to reach a resolution tonight in filling a vacancy on the council left when Joan Lovely stepped down to become state senator.

Last Thursday evening councillors debated nearly seven hours and and took 300 votes but were still deadlocked 5-5, between favorites Steve Pinto and Lucy Corchado.

Councilor Kevin R. Carr Jr., who supported Caracho, said today that he is optimistic about waging a compromise in a timely fashion tonight.

“I’ve had some good conversations with the individual councilors and I believe no one wants to see what happened Thursday night happen again,” Carr said. “I’m advocating and will continue to advocate for a compromise.”

City Council President Jerry Ryan, who supported Pinto, said he would like to see the new councillor come from the six candidates who have applied for the position rather than a new alternative. But he wants the matter resolved.

“I felt if these six people apply we should go with this pool and not go outside,“ Ryan said.

"I hate to see the council split like that, but it happens sometimes,'' Ryan said. "I hope tonight we can get it resolved and move on. Competition is always good. It makes for a better government. I’m trying to find some positive come out from Thursday night.”

The council will reconvene at 6 p.m. in City Hall to make what they hope will be a final vote for the vacant seat. The elected councilor will serve a one-year term.

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