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Council President Matt James, right, gets sworn in for his third consecutive term during an organizational meeting Thursday at City Hall. He is surrounded by his family, including his wife, Allison, and new baby born just four days ago.

Deluca renamed secretary, officials sworn in Nov. 10

The Ocean City Council welcomed two new members and kept the same leadership at an organizational meeting held last week to certify the recent election results.

Council President Matt James, who received the highest number of votes in the Nov. 8 council election, was renamed to his leadership position. Council members also unanimously voted to rename Councilman Tony DeLuca council secretary.

Board of Elections member Amy Rothermel opened the Nov. 10 meeting by officially certifying the election results, which included the naming of three council members and the mayor, and solidifying the passage of three ballot questions.

Rothermel also swore in James, newly elected councilwoman Carol Proctor, and Mayor Rick Meehan. James was elected to a third consecutive term, Proctor is embarking on her first, and Meehan will begin his eighth conservative two-year term. Newcomer Will Savage earned the second highest number of votes for council but was not able to attend last week’s meeting.

Now former Councilman Mark Paddack, who lost reelection after coming in fourth in the council race, officially stepped down from his position last week.

“It’s been a wonderful, wonderful honor to serve on the City Council,” Paddack said during a farewell speech before leaving the dais.

Paddack served one term on council and served as a police officer for 30 years before that. He said many people have asked him his intentions since he is not returning to council, and he referenced an ongoing joke among members of the Transportation Committee.

“We’ve talked about me coming back and driving a city bus as an ambassador of the town,” he quipped.

On a serious note, Paddack said he does not know what he will be doing and he thanked the staff, his colleagues, several past council members, and the voters for their support and encouragement over the last four years. He also presented a folded American flag in honor of his father, a U.S, Army veteran, who recently passed away.

James and Meehan also thanked Paddack for his service as a police officer and a councilman.

“Everybody up here would agree when you came to our meetings, you were prepared. You were prepared to participate. You participated in discussions. You led some discussions. You helped people change their minds, and sometimes you changed yours,” Meehan said. “And really that’s what this is all about.”

The new council met for the first time as a full group at a work session Tuesday.

This story appears in the Nov. 18, 2022 print edition of the OC Today.

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