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 Taylor Gets Nod to Fill Carthage Post

May 21, 2008 - A little more than a month after one of its five member resigned, the Carthage Town Council is on its way back to full membership.

Rush County Republican Party Chairman John McCane appointed Jack Taylor of Carthage Tuesday morning to fill a vacancy on the council. Taylor, 48, replaces Mike Onkst, who resigned his position on the council last month.

McCane told The Banner yesterday that two people had applied for the council vacancy: Taylor and Abbie Wehr. McCane said he thought Taylor, a certified public accountant, could bring financial expertise to the council that "could be quite valuable."

Taylor told The Banner that he and his family have lived in Carthage 13 years, and he and his wife have two daughters, an 11-year-old and a 16-year-old. He has worked as CPA for K.B. Parrish & Co. in Indianapolis for the past 14 years and this will be his first experience holding public office.

"I just want to be a good asset to the community and help improve Carthage to the best of my ability," Taylor told The Banner. He said he is not coming into office with a particular agenda other than trying to make the town a better place.

While Indiana law gave McCane the authority, as party chairman, to fill the vacancy, it appears that he waited too long to act. Indiana statute required McCane to fill the vacancy within 30 days of April 15, the date the vacancy was created, but his appointment of Taylor, however, came 35 days after Onkst's resignation.

"I don't foresee it being an issue," McCane said of his tardy appointment, noting that a similar circumstance had occurred not long ago with a vacancy on the Glenwood Town Council. An attorney with the Indiana Election Division of the Indiana Secretary of State's Office, however, said the appointment was not timely.

According to Dale Simmons, co-general counsel of the IED, McCane only had the right to fill the vacancy within 30 days of Onkst's resignation. Because McCane did not fill the vacancy within that time period, he said Indiana statute gives the remaining council members the responsibility for selecting Onkst's replacement.

If the other members of the town council want Taylor, who has not yet taken his oath of office, to replace Onkst, Simmons said they should approve his appointment during a public meeting. The Carthage Town Council is scheduled to meet next at 5 p.m. Thursday, May 22, for a special work session, which will be held at Carthage Town Hall, 6 W. First St. and is open to the public.


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