New Supervisor Not Seated

With six applicants for an open Gibraltar Town Board seat, the board deferred a decision to select one during its Oct. 5 meeting.

The six candidates, all of whom had submitted application letters by the Sept. 28 deadline, appeared before the board and briefly stated why they wanted to serve and why they are qualified to do so. The applicants are Tom Birmingham, Scott DeVillers, Kathaleen Diltz, Jack Moore, Karl Stubenvoll and John Selenica. 

At the beginning of the meeting, supervisor Brian Merkel said he was disappointed that he learned “through the grapevine when they saw the Pulse,” rather than through the town, that a vacancy had been created when Tim Luettgen resigned, effective Sept. 30. Luettgen, who was serving his second two-year term, said he’d be spending more time in Florida and didn’t want to be an absentee supervisor.

“There was a lack of communication among board members going through this,” Merkel said.

Board conversations about filling a vacancy for an elected seat would have to be made during an open meeting. That’s what the board was doing that evening in reviewing the letters of application and meeting the candidates, said town board chair Steve Sohns.

“We don’t have to do it tonight if we don’t want to,” he said.

Town board supervisors said they had never expected to receive so many applicants. They decided to ponder the options, deferring a decision until a later date.

Sohns reminded them that they didn’t have to make an appointment and could wait for the April 2023 election to let voters decide. 

“In my opinion, that’s how we’d like to have it anyway,” he said. 

Sohns invited the applicants to join town committees or run in April if they weren’t selected.