Councilman Cecil Thomas to resign, Pam Thomas sworn in - Cincinnati News, Weather, Sports from FOX19 NOW-WXIX

City Councilman resigns, wife appointed to seat

Cecil Thomas Cecil Thomas
Pam Thomas Pam Thomas
CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) -

Cincinnati Councilman Cecil Thomas announced his resignation from council, effective Wednesday, April 17. Thomas, a Democrat, is planning to run for Ohio's 9th District Senate Seat, which is currently held by Eric Kearney. 

As of Wednesday, Thomas was no longer a member of council.  But, the Thomas name didn't leave with him. His wife Pam will take his place.

Pam Thomas was sworn in following Wednesday's meeting to replace him on council. She plans to run for a full term on council in the November election.

"This is a great responsibility, and one that I do not take lightly," said Pam Thomas.

The Charter of the City of Cincinnati is long, but you don't have to go very deep into it to find out how Pamula Thomas is able to fill her husband's vacant seat at City Hall.

Article II, Section 4b of the charter dictates that right. 

Thomas doesn't get to appoint his successor outright.  The charter directs each member-elect to file a 'successor designation certificate'.  Thomas' picks were council members Wendell Young and Yvette Simpson, all Democrats, who together, made the pick.

"When they come on board, they designate individuals who are currently council members to appoint for them.  Those individuals determine who that appointment should be," said council member Yvette Simpson.

But is this a conflict of interest when a family member takes over for a family member? One council member who appointed Thomas' wife says it had nothing to do with relation.

"The relationship is not critical.  The experience is critical.  I would not look over her just by the virtue of the fact that her husband has to be a council member.  She was presented to us and she's got great experience, and the ability to be reelected, we believe," added Simpson.

Cecil Thomas leaves council at a critical time as jobs are in limbo for firefighters and police officers.  Touting his wife's track record and her electable ability, Mr. Thomas says the pick is the right one.

"I am 100% confident that she is the best person for the job.  She will continue to drive forward the positive growth of our city."

As those layoffs loom, Thomas says he will keep a close eye on what's going on, and said he'll stay in his 'wife's ear' about the situation.

Copyright 2013 WXIX. All rights reserved.

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