By a vote of 9-0, the Everett City Council confirmed the rule of the City Charter and voted to appoint former Alderman Michael Mangan as Councilor at-Large, to fill the vacancy created by former Councilor Joseph McGonagle’s election as State Representative.
According to the Charter, in the event of a vacancy, the seat is to be filled by the next highest vote getter in the most recent city council election for the seat, provided that candidate received at least 20-percent of the vote.
Mangan received more than 20-percent of the vote in the fall of 2013, and had the next highest vote total after the five at-Large Councilors who were elected in that election, Richard Dell Isola, John Hanlon, Peter Napolitano, Cynthia Sarnie and Joseph McGonagle.
The only councilor not to vote for Mangan was Michael Marchese, who was absent from the meeting.
Prior to Monday night’s vote, Marchese’s brother, Joseph P. Marchese Jr. had actually sought to block the appointment of Mangan to the council, and win the seat for himself, through a temporary restraining order in Middlesex Superior Court. Joseph Marchese argued that Mangan’s 2014 Disposition Agreement with the Office of Campaign and Political Finance (OCPF) over alleged campaign finance infractions made him ineligible to serve on the City Council under the adopted City Charter.
However, the judge in the case, Justice Peter B. Krupp, found that Mangan’s Disposition Agreement with the state does not disqualify him to serve under the terms of the Charter, since the Charter only disqualifies a person who “has been finally convicted of a state or federal felony.”
In fact, Mangan has not been found guilty of, or even admitted to, any wrongdoing in his Disposition Agreement and further the Disposition Agreement itself does not prohibit Mangan from serving in elective office.
Justice Krupp also noted that even if Mangan were to be disqualified by the Charter, the Charter contains no provision for who would serve if the next top vote getter were unable to serve, essentially leaving the decision entirely in the hands of the Council itself. Thus, he could not have ordered the Council to appoint Joseph Marchese Jr. in any case. A point that Justice Krupp made clear in his ruling.
Following his appointment and swearing in on Monday night, Mangan took to the podium briefly to thank his family and his supporters in the audience and then quickly took his seat on the council.
“I look forward to working with each of you on the business of the city,” said Mangan.