For most who attended the Marco Island City Council meeting on Tuesday, November 13, they were prepared to watch family members and friends take the oath of office for the next four years to serve as councilors. They won that right by outpolling their competition in a hard-fought battle to carry out their agendas and keep promises made to voters during the almost four months of campaigning and pounding on doors throughout the island.
With smiles beaming, Erick Brechnitz, Victor Rios and Sam Young would stand before a packed house as they would take the oath of office. That oath was administered by Collier County 20thJudicial Circuit Court Judge Ramiro Manalich. Judge Manalich has handled several of the swearing in ceremonies over the last number of years.
The newly sworn in councilors would take their seats on the dais as Rabbi Mark Gross of the Jewish Congregation of Marco Island would read the invocation and the salute to the flag was led by Councilor Larry Honig.
That would conclude the normalcy for the evening, as freshly elected second term Councilor Victor Rios moved to nominate newly elected Councilor Erik Brechnitz to ascend to the chairman’s position, therefore passing over Vice Chair Charlette Roman. Subsequent to Rios’ motion, Councilor Howard Reed nominated Councilor Roman to that same position.
On the first ballot Brechnitz had positive votes from Councilors Rios, Honig, Grifoni, Young and Brechnitz. Only Roman and Reed would cast negative votes.
Rios would go on to be nominated as vice chairman and that vote would be unanimous.
Brechnitz has served for two years on the Planning Board as Councilor Honig’s appointee and was in his second year as chairman.