Unlike the last Republican caucus held in Porter in 2008, Friday’s GOP
caucus to select a replacement for Porter Town Council member Micheal Genger
will be closed to the general public.
Genger, in his first term as District 4 councilman, has resigned to move his
family to South Korea to do missionary work. His successor will serve until
Dec. 31, 2011. District 4 encompasses the west side of Wagner Road to past
Tremont Road, and the north side of U.S. 20 to Porter Beach.
Henry Huyser, current president of the Porter Board of Zoning Appeals, has
filed for Genger’s seat as has Trevin Fowler, a former member of the town’s
Redevelopment Commission who resigned in June citing health reasons
requiring extensive rehabilitation. The deadline to submit candidacy
applications has passed.
Sundae Kubacki, Porter County GOP Voter Registration officer, said County
Republican Chairperson Joyce Webster has appointed Porter’s Bruce Snyder as
caucus chairman. Today, Snyder said, “That’s news to me.” He is chairman of
the town’s Redevelopment Commission.
According to state law, the new councilman will be chosen by secret caucus
ballot. Voting will be Genger, Precinct 5 committeeman; Snyder, Precinct 7;
Levi Nagalski, Precinct 13; and Town Council president Michele Bollinger,
Snyder described Huyser and Fowler as “good candidates we all know well.”
Tomorrow’s caucus will take place at 10 a.m. in the Comfort Inn conference
room, 1800 West U.S. 20 in Porter.
Aug. 27, 2008 a GOP caucus open to the public was held at the Porter town
hall to replace then-councilman Bill Sexton, who resigned to move to
Merrillville. An initial tie vote led to a second 3-2 ballot with the former
GOP chairman breaking the deadlock and electing Todd Martin, who had lived
in Porter for 45 days, over 15-year resident Ken Timm. Some attending the
caucus were visibly upset over the outcome and voiced their displeasure
including Republican Councilman Dave Babcock.
Snyder said that led to the decision to close Friday’s caucus. “That’s just
the way we wanted it. We decided that at the end of the last caucus.”
Huyser and Fowler will have up to three minutes to address the caucus and
each also may have one person speak on their behalf. Webster as county
chairperson may vote in a second ballot if necessary if the caucus so
chooses before the balloting begins.
In addition to Bollinger, Martin and Babcock, Republican Jon Granat is a
Town Council member. They each are paid approximately $6,000 per year, and
they and their dependents are eligible to participate in the town’s employee