Haas has edge in maneuvering for Council presidency

The city council presidency for the coming term beginning with the New Year is attracting major attention with the prospect that Mayor Thomas Ambrosino may be leaving before his term expires.

The rumors about the mayor leaving are abundant, however the mayor himself has said repeatedly he has nowhere to go presently.

Insiders insist the mayor will be taking a position with the newly formed Transportation Department and that it is likely an appointment is coming sooner rather than later.

Nearly all city hall observers agree – the mayor won’t serve out the remaining two years of his mayoralty.

Present council president Dan Rizzo, the only announced candidate for mayor if Ambrosino leaves, told the Journal earlier this week he is not actively soliciting votes for the 2010 council presidency.

“I’m running no matter what. It won’t matter to me who the council president is. I’m running. That’s it. It is very simple,” he said.

Obviously, it is widely believed that whomever is the council president when Ambrosino leaves, ostensibly becomes the acting mayor – with or without powers – giving that person an edge over anyone else who wants to run.

This week, Councillor at Large Robert Haas appears to have the edge among his colleagues who would entertain becoming the 2010 council president.

Councillors Ira Novoselsky, George Rotondo, Jim Kimmerle, and Arthur Guinasso are apparently supporting Haas.

Councillor Anthony Zambuto has been attempting to solicit votes from among his colleagues for the council presidency. Councillor John Powers says he is interested.

If Haas captures the council presidency, he immediately becomes a possible contender for mayor – or for the city clerk’s position.

Bottom line, Rizzo is running for mayor – council president or not. Haas may toss his hat into the ring and Rotondo, too.

However, all of this is nothing but speculation unless and until the mayor is offered and accepts a position that removes him from his chair at Revere City Hall.

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