Deputy Mayor Steve Morelli surprised some with his resignation from the Town Council to take a spot as a Worker's Compensation Commissioner for the State of Connecticut.
The procedure for replacing a sitting member of the Council is the same as just about any Board or Commission in town.
"When we found out Steve was leaving, we started talking to some people to see if they might be interested," Mayor Adam Salina said. "We will continue to do that but there is no rush because there are no Town Council meetings in August.
"Since Steve is a Democrat, he will be replaced by a Democrat and that person will be chosen by the Berlin Democratic Town Committee. We will meet with some people and then we will nominate that person formally at a Council meeting."
At his last meeting, Morelli was praised and roasted a bit before his resignation was accepted.
"We have become friends but you are an expensive friend," Republican Dave Evans said, drawing laughs from the audience. "I am glad you are not leaving this position to take up a part on a comedy tour."
Morelli said if he did that and needed a partner, Evans would be his choice.
Councilor Will Watson said, "On a personal level, Steve is one of the brightest people I've ever come across. He doesn't enter into anything without putting great thought to it and he has shown that as a member of the Council."
Salina said it was with great regret that he accepted Morelli's resignation.
"Steve has been a good friend for several years now and he has been the most reliable and dependable person you could ever ask for," Salina said. "He is one of the smartest people I know and I never doubted him when he had to step in for me in any capacity. He always cut right through it whether you liked it or not. It's not often that a Governor hand picks a local person to serve so not only should Steve be proud but Berlin should be proud too."
Morelli joked that "The Mayor and Mr. Watson should enlarge their circle of friends," if they think I'm one of the smartest guys they know.
"I always tried to do my best," he said. "I have a lot of respect for my fellow Council members and the Mayor. If there comes a day when he is not the Mayor of this town, people will see how much time and effort he puts into this job, doing great things for Berlin, without getting paid. I have enjoyed it and I'm excited about the new opportunity."