Help Wanted: board member

When the deadline arrived, only two residents stepped forward to fill the three open seats on the Granville Board of Education.

When 5 p.m. of April 18 ticked past on the district office wall clock Pam Tatko had not showed up to turn in a petition to sign up to run and retain her seat on the board. Tatko was out of town and unavailable for comment for the article.

Board incumbents President Kathy Nelson and John Shaw filled out petitions to run again and turned them in prior to the deadline, while Tatko, who earlier expressed some doubt about running for another term did not.

The vacancy, with two people for three positions, creates an unusual situation those familiar with the long term workings of the board could not recall.

On May 17 when voters go to the polls to decide the fate of the $24 million school budget which raises taxes 1.5 percent, they will also select school board members.

According to education law, district clerk Diana Pitts said, at least the third position will be determined by write in votes.

However, if three write-in candidates receive more votes than the two incumbents, the possibility exists to see three new people on the board of education for the next school year.

Likely, the write-in candidate to garner the most votes will be asked if they want to serve on the board and would be sworn in along with Nelson and Shaw.

If the write-in candidate with the highest vote total should decline the position, Pitts said the candidate with the next highest vote total would be offered the position; candidates would be asked from the highest vote total to the lowest vote total until no more write in candidates are available until one accepts the position.  

The board might appoint a new member only if all write-in candidates are unwilling or unavailable to serve. The appointed member would serve for one year and a special election would be held along with next year’s budget vote for a two-year school board position.

The only potential new face, resident Dan Brown, said Friday he had the requisite number of signatures to turn in a completed petition; however, he still had some questions as the deadline loomed.

“I have not totally determined if I’m going to run. Right now I can’t make a total commitment because I don’t know what my work situation is going to involve, I don’t have my work situation totally squared away,” Brown said.

Brown confirmed with the Sentinel Monday afternoon he would not be filing his petition to run for the board by the deadline.

While he said he had not ruled out running for an office in the future, Brown said he could not make space in his schedule for the amount of time the board requires with current work and family commitments.

Brown works at St. Gobain Performance Plastics off of East Potter Avenue.

Board candidates needed to turn in an official petition signed by a required number of eligible voters from the school district. That number is either 25 or 2 percent of the number of people who voted for the last school budget, whichever number is greater. Completed petitions had to be registered with the district by 5 p.m. Monday April 18.  

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