|By G. Michael Dobbs|
SPRINGFIELD Mayor Charles Ryan announced Tuesday that Attorney Edward Pikula would replace Patrick Markey as City Solicitor.
Markey has resigned from the post after serving for nearly two years. He cited the growing hours and responsibilities of the part-time position were at odds with his other job and home life.
"He will be sorely missed," Ryan said. He added that Markey's tenure as "total integrity and a great Legal Department" marked City Solicitor
Ryan said that Markey was working "far beyond" his contracted 25 hours a week.
Markey said at the press conference that he met Ryan in 2003 when both men were involved in issues surrounding the city's library system. Markey said he was invited to Ryan's home after he was elected mayor and was surprised to hear Ryan ask him to take over the job.
Markey thanked the mayor for the opportunity to "serve the city I grew up in and loved."
Markey referred to Pikula as his "go-to guy," as Pikula has extensive experience in municipal law.
Ryan said Markey will remain a "confidante and advisor" to his administration and will ask Markey to serve on a board or commission, although which one has not yet been determined.
Pikula has worked with the Legal Department for almost 20 years and currently is the Chief of Litigation for the city. A graduate of the University of Massachusetts and Western New England College School of Law, he has a private practice with O'Connor, Martinelli, Cullinan & Pikula in Springfield.
Pikula will be working a contracted 30-hour week for the city and will be paid $85,000. Markey was paid $65,000.
"Pat can be proud of the way he left the Legal Department," Pikula said.
Ryan also named Mark Ianello as the City Auditor, a position in which he has served in an interim capacity since former Auditor Anthony Basille transferred to another position.
The term is for three years and must be approved by the City Council.
Ryan said Ianello's continued involvement with the position will allow it to reach "new levels of accomplishment."