Local school board races set

Not enough candidates running in Fitzgerald

By: Maria Allard | Warren Weekly | Published October 19, 2016

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WARREN — While so much focus has been on the upcoming presidential race for the general election Nov. 8, residents will also vote in local races, including school board.

In Fitzgerald Public Schools, however, there are not enough candidates. Incumbent Lori Eseman-Dreyer is the only candidate running for the two open six-year seats. Longtime board member Hilary Kutella has decided not to run again.

District Superintendent Barbara VanSweden said there is a process in place that school officials will follow to ensure the second position is filled. The new term begins Jan. 1, 2017. Kutella’s current term expires Dec. 31.

“If there is no one to fill the open position, the board has to appoint someone,” VanSweden said. “In January, we will announce there is an open board position.”

From there, interested candidates will be able to apply for the position. Board members will then undergo an interview and selection process to appoint a new board member.

“It’s time-consuming,” VanSweden said. “Instead of the citizens making the selection, the board now has to go through the process.”

Beginning Jan. 1, the school board will have 30 days to appoint a new board member. If nobody is selected, the Macomb Intermediate School District will step in and appoint someone.

Attempts to reach Kutella about why he is not running again were unsuccessful. According to the district’s website, www.fitz.k12.mi.us, Kutella has served 10 terms as a board member. The site states that he has lived in the Fitzgerald community for 54 years. He has four children, all graduates of the district.

Other local school districts will hold board elections this fall.

In Center Line Public Schools, incumbent Gary Gasowski and Gary Shimer filed to run for the two six-year terms. Pamela Grey-Pugliese is not seeking re-election.

In Van Dyke Public Schools, incumbents Eleanor Bates and Richard Carloni filed to run for two six-year terms, while current board members Amber Brace and Charlene Johnson-El filed to run for the two partial terms ending Dec. 31, 2018.

Five candidates filed for the three six-year terms on the Warren Consolidated Schools Board of Education: Jill Forrest, Susan Jozwik, John Schroder, and incumbents Megan Papasian-Broadwell and Susan Trombley. Incumbent Ben Lazarus is not seeking re-election. Attempts to reach Lazarus for comment were unsuccessful.

There will be two six-year terms open in Warren Woods Public Schools, for which current board members Jere Green and Michael D. Fitzpatrick filed.

The following candidates will run for the two six-year terms on the Macomb Community College Board of Trustees: Mike Aiello, Joseph Backus, Steven Banaszak, Kristi Dean, Ken Goike, Roy Gruenberg, Dominic La Rosa, Katherine Lorenzo, Jeff Randazzo, Peter Szyszkowski and Vincent Tocco. Current board members James Kelly and Elizabeth Lucido did not file to run; Lucido is running for county commissioner in the 9th District.

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