By Chadwick Dolgos
Crafton Borough’s council is experiencing an unexpected reorganization, as current members seek to fill vacancies for those forced to leave due to personal matters.
Colton Chandler was selected during the borough’s Feb. 25 meeting to fill the seat formerly held by Anthony Saba, who resigned his position on Feb. 11 in order to take closer care of his family. Shortly after Chandler’s election, Vice President Edward Alo announced his resignation.
Chandler, who has served on Crafton’s planning commission since March 2020, was in the running against four other candidates: Thomas Philips, Michael Zahl, John Oliverio, and Nancy Voelker.
“If elected to council, I will do anything in my power to always do the best for the community,” said Chandler during his five-minute presentation to council.
Chandler received four out of the five votes cast for candidates, with Councilman Fred Amendola voting for Oliverio and Councilwoman Coletta Perry abstaining. Any candidate that received a simple majority, which in this case was four votes, was presumed the winner.
“I’m relieved that my vote isn’t required at this point because I count four,” said Perry. “I’m off the hook.”
Chandler will be sworn into council during the borough’s next meeting, following the execution of his affidavit of residency.
“The mayor can swear in Mr. Chandler at any time after the affidavit is executed,” said Solicitor Steve Korbel. “You can wait until the next meeting, you don’t have to wait until the next meeting, whatever you would like to do.”
Having recently moved back to Crafton in May 2019 with his wife, Chandler explained he wants to be more involved with the community where he and his wife plan to raise their family.
“The main thing that attracted me to council is that I believe Crafton has a younger population moving in to raise their families, and I believe that young people need to get involved with the communities they live in,” said Chandler, 28.
Chandler’s seat is set to expire by the end of the year, but he fully intends on running for reelection.
“Since this is only a seat filling the remainder of the year, I am also running for the seats opening up in 2022,” he said.
Following Chandler’s election, Vice President Alo announced his resignation from the council.
“My husband and I have elected to sell our home to be able to go take care of our family,” said Alo. “I will be having to resign from borough council and as your vice president in the future.”
The news comes as Alo and Saba’s
families continue to be plagued with misfortune.
“In October 2020, my husband’s mother succumbed to her battle with lung cancer,” said Alo. “The day after we buried my mother-in-law, my mother was diagnosed with the same type of lung cancer.”
Alo’s letter of resignation has not been submitted yet. Once submitted, the council will then have to accept it and elect a new member to fill the vacancy.
Applications that were received for Saba’s resignation will be considered to fill Alo's vacant seat, once the letter of resignation is accepted by council. New applications can be sent to both the council and the borough manager, Doug Sample, via email.
“All of those that presented this evening will not have to present again,” said President Phillip Levasseur. “If you would like to withdraw your candidacy from this process, please send council and our manager an email.”
Alo’s two-year term is also set to expire by the end of the year. Whoever is elected to fill his vacancy will be up for reelection in November.