By Solon City Council’s first meeting in December, Mayor Edward H. Kraus said he will recommend a new member to the Planning Commission replacing Chairman Eugene Macke Bentley who was elected to the Ward 1 council seat during the general election.

Mr. Bentley defeated incumbent Councilman Douglas A. Magill in a close race on Nov. 5.

Mayor Kraus said he has been contacted by three interested residents and plans to make his selection from that pool. City Council, which by charter votes on the recommendation, meets at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 2.

He said he is looking for someone with a business background to bring to the panel. It doesn’t necessarily have to be someone involved in a large business, he said, but someone familiar with the process businesses go through to come before the city with a variance.

Mayor Kraus said he is also looking for someone who is sensitive and understanding and obviously a resident of the city so they can come to the panel with an understanding from a resident standpoint, as well as a business one.

“I want someone independent and not political,” he continued, “someone not tied to a political party or any one of us.

“I don’t want someone who is my buddy,” the mayor said.

It is important the new member votes independently, and not based on trying to please either the mayor or City Council, he said.

The planning commission is comprised of five members, including the mayor, and a representative of City Council, who is currently Councilman Robert N. Pelunis.

Members serve six-year terms.

For the last decade, Sue Reid has covered the government, business climate and residents of Solon. A Times reporter for 22 years, Ms. Reid has earned commendations from the Ohio Newspaper Association and Cleveland Press Association.

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