Seven file to run for three St. Clair Shores City Council seats

Primary election to be held Aug. 6

By: Kristyne E. Demske | St. Clair Shores Sentinel | Published May 7, 2019

File photo

ST. CLAIR SHORES — All three incumbents will be joined by four other residents on the Aug. 6 primary election ballot in the race for the St. Clair Shores City Council.

Joining City Councilmen Peter Accica, first elected in 2015, Ron Frederick, first appointed in 2005, and Chris Vitale, first elected in 2011, will be Ronald Hurd, Justin Maniaci, Gordon Miskelly and Lawanda Turner.

Hurd has lived in the city for five years and works in insurance. He said his main reason for running is that he wants to help the community.

“The city of St. Clair Shores has done so much for me,” he said in an email interview. “It’s provided me a great place to live, it’s established lifelong friendships, and also close distance to my family.”

He said he wants to give residents a voice and see more of the community attend City Council meetings; make sure that first responders, teachers and small business owners have the tools and resources they need to be successful; and make sure that the infrastructure of St. Clair Shores is the best.

Miskelly, who has lived in St. Clair Shores for 50 years and is the CFO of Kimberly Fence in Warren, said that he wants to give back to the city.

“We need to maintain a strong community, so the schools are strong,” he said. “We’ve got to keep (the) Police and Fire departments strong, and we’ve got to hold contractors and vendors accountable for the work they do in the city.

“We need to do more for the citizens in the city as well.”

Turner, who has lived in the city for seven years, said that she decided to run because of the vacant businesses she sees in Macomb County. She has worked in real estate for 12 years and is also active with the local Democratic Party as the vice chair of the St. Clair Shores Democratic Club, and as a member of the slate for the Macomb County Democratic Committee and the slate for the 9th Congressional District’s Committee.

“My hope is to restore (entrepreneurial) spirit and also get local business and small business back on track to developing,” she said. “I want to go in and hear from certain property owners why their properties have been vacant for years.”

Vitale said that he feels there is still work to be done. The Chrysler employee has lived in the city on and off for 35 of his 46 years and pointed to his work on the Foreclosure Committee, helping to rehabilitate homes seized for foreclosure in the city and bring them up to higher standards, as one of the highlights of his time in office.

Now, he said, there are new challenges for the city: the construction of new homes, the remodeling of businesses and attracting further investment to the city, which he said he’d like to have the opportunity to work on over another term.

He said he’d also like to have the opportunity to work with a new city manager after one is selected this summer.

Accica, a retired business agent for Bricklayers Local 2, has lived in the city for 60 years.

He said he’d like to continue working to fix the roads and parks in the city, and that he enjoys helping residents.

“There’s a lot of unfinished things I’d still like to take on,” he said.

Accica said he is proud to have worked on projects to put a new bathroom in Veterans Memorial Park and to have completed the baseball fields behind where St. Gertrude Church used to stand. He said that he’d like to continue tackling projects like those, as well as working to keep the lake clean.

Frederick, who has lived in the city for nearly 60 years, said he wants to make sure that St. Clair Shores remains the community it is known to be.

“The key is to make sure that we keep the personality of the city the same, to make sure that all the work we’ve been doing we continue to do,” he said. “Making sure that the infrastructure is taken care of.”

Frederick said that he is still working to bring a hotel to the city as well. He wants to invite young families into St. Clair Shores with parks and recreation activities, and to continue taking care of senior citizens, “which are the backbone of the city.”

Frederick said he’s proud that the city has been able to enhance Blossom Heath Park by taking down the fence, repairing the road and seawall, and wants to continue attracting new business to the city and revitalizing the businesses and buildings that are already in St. Clair Shores.

Maniaci could not be reached for comment before press time.

Mayor Kip Walby is running unopposed for the position of mayor and will be on the November ballot.