Josh Dulaney, Staff Writer
Posted: 01/23/2013 05:15:02 PM PST

RIALTO – A vacant seat remains on the City Council after the four members couldn’t agree on whom to appoint Tuesday night.

For about 20 minutes, residents spoke on behalf of candidates, and aspiring council members pitched their credentials, to no avail.

Councilman Ed Palmer made a motion to appoint former Councilwoman Lynn Hirtz and was supported by Councilman Shawn O’Connell.

Palmer said in speaking with the public he heard that residents wanted someone with experience. They also wanted a female appointee, he said.

“They all said basically the same thing – we need somebody on the council immediately, that can dive right into the problems we have facing us which are budget issues, economic problems,” Palmer said.

Mayor Deborah Robertson and Councilman Joe Baca Jr. voted against a Hirtz appointment.

Baca then nominated Rafael Trujillo, a former congressional aide to his father, Joe Baca, who in November lost to Gloria Negrete-McLeod in the newly drawn 35th Congressional District election.

Trujillo, who is on the Recreation and Parks Commission, came in third behind Palmer and O’Connell in the city’s November council election.

Baca said that was one of his reasons for nominating Trujillo.

Robertson also supported Trujillo, but she and Baca were opposed by O’Connell and Palmer.

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