Businessman Marvin Dabish took the oath of office Wednesday evening to fill the council seat of Oregon Councilman Mike Sheehy.
Sheehy vacated his seat to take the seat of former State Rep. Matt Szollosi.
Oregon Mayor Mike Seferian told The Press that he administered the oath of office to Dabish at 7 p.m. on Wednesday.
The city charter dictates the process of filling a vacant council seat. According to the city charter, the person who received the next highest amount of votes at the last council election gets to fill the seat. When all seven seats of council were up for election in 2011, Dabish finished eighth.
If Dabish had been unable to serve, according to the charter, then the person who finished with the next highest number of votes is appointed. If no one is available, then the vacancy is filled by a majority vote of council within 20 days of the vacancy. After 20 days, the mayor has the sole authority to fill the position.
Dabish, of Haley Drive, had recently submitted petitions to the Lucas County Board of Elections to run for council by the June 12 deadline.
Sheehy, who also submitted petitions before he was appointed to fill Szollosi’s seat, joins incumbents Tom Susor and Sandy Bihn who will not be on the November ballot. Susor is running for mayor against Seferian, who is seeking a second term, and Bihn’s petitions were not submitted to the board of elections on time.
As a result, three new candidates will be elected to council this year. With Dabish taking Sheehy’s seat, that leaves candidates Kathy Pollauf and retired police officer Tim Zale to be elected to Susor’s and Bihn’s seats in November, since there are now only seven candidates running for council. Incumbents Jerry Peach, James Seaman, Dennis Walendzak and Terry Reeves are running for re-election.
Pollauf, who has her own message therapy business, ran unsuccessfully for council in 2007 and 2009. In 2011, she decided not to run. But in September of that year, Councilman Clint Wasserman vacated his seat to take a position with the Lucas County prosecutor’s office. As a result, Pollauf, as dictated by the city charter, filled the seat because she finished with the next highest vote in the previous election, though she was only allowed to serve for a few months until a new council was sworn in. Seferian said he was impressed by Pollauf’s dedication to the position, even though her time there was brief.
“She did her homework studying the issues and was very involved as a member of council,” he said.
There is the possibility that another candidate could be put on the ballot if Sheehy submitted a “qualified petition” to the board, according to Seferian. A qualified petition allows a certified candidate to name a five person committee who could nominate someone else to the ballot in case their candidate is no longer running, as in Sheehy’s case.
Sheehy could not be reached for comment.
Seferian said Dabish has regularly attended council meetings for the last few years.
“I’ve known him to be a very kind, community minded guy,” said Seferian.
In addition to his narrow defeat for council in 2011, Dabish, 38, ran against former Mayor Marge Brown and Seferian in a primary for mayor in 2009, but was eliminated after coming in third place.
Dabish, who is also a grocer, has owned several sweepstakes cafes in Oregon, Toledo, Fremont, Fostoria, and Findlay, as well as in communities in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Georgia.
In Internet “sweepstakes” cafes, patrons purchase pre-paid phone cards with Internet minutes to use for gaming on computer terminals.