EGG HARBOR CITY — City Council newcomers Joseph Ricci Jr. and Robin Sefton were sworn into office Jan. 3 along with incumbent Angelo Lello. The three Republicans were elected to three-year terms Nov. 6. All were administered the oath of office by Atlantic County Freeholder Chairwoman Amy Gatto.
The Republican sweep on Election Day narrows the Democratic majority on council from 7-2 to 5-4.
Bipartisan cooperation was evident as Democrat Robert Ross was unanimously selected president of council. However, that bipartisanship disappeared when Stefania Kuehner was nominated to serve as president pro tempore of the council. All four Republicans voted no and, due to Kuehner abstaining on the vote, the count deadlocked at 4-4. Mayor Lisa Jiampetti cast the deciding positive vote, allowing Kuehner to be elected to the position.
In other appointments, James Carroll was reappointed as the city attorney, the firm of Remington Vernick was selected to again serve as city engineer as well as municipal land use engineer, and Tim Michel was reappointed as city planner and municipal land use planner.
Jiampetti recognized former council members Ed Dennis and Mason Wright for their service. Both narrowly lost their re-election bids in November. Dennis was a fixture on council for 44 years, including many years as president, while Wright served two three-year terms.
“This will be a great year in Egg Harbor City,” Jiampetti said. “The Renault Winery has new owners and big plans, more homes are being built in the Egg Harbor City North development, a bike path will be added on Philadelphia Avenue, we will have a Super Wawa and our Police Department is awesome.”