Tuesday, January 11, 2011

City Council Passes Gavel

Lisa E. Crowley
BROCKTON—When Ward 4 City Councilor Paul F. Studenski was five years old in 1953 he had the honor of watching his father receive the gavel as City Council President for the first of six unprecedented times.
Monday night, nearly 60 years later, Studenski has followed in his father’s footsteps and was immeasurably surprised to receive his father’s well-worn gavel from City Clerk Anthony Zeoli.
“They used to call him the fastest gavel in the East,” Studenski said following Monday’s meeting when he was unanimously voted as the council’s president for 2011.
Studenski said his father died in October 2003 at 76 and not only served as city council president, but also mayor and state representative.
Studenski, the city’s former police chief, said he plans to follow his father’s lead in that he will allow councilors to discuss issues, but will also keep debate moving if there is too much repetition.
“I want information to be shared but we also have to move the council’s business,” Studenski said.
Studenski said it was completely unexpected when Zeoli handed him a small, brown wooden gavel his father used during his six terms as council president—a record that still stands officials said.
Studenski said one of his brothers pulled the gavel out of an attic or box and gave it to Zeoli for Monday night’s vote.
“I can’t believe someone still had it,” he said.
Outgoing Council President Christopher MacMillan said he hopes 2011 will be a better year than 2010 for council members.
“I hope we will be a proactive government instead of a reactive government,” MacMillan said. “We need to take the lead and show people we can do a lot better job than last year,” he said.

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