Community Board 11 members will see some order at their monthly board meetings.
After the board added a sergeant-at-arms as part of its new set of by-laws last month, members nominated and voted Joe Bombace to the position.
Bombace defeated David Leavitt by 20-15 votes for a one-year term.
The sergeant at arms is responsible for keeping order at the monthly meetings and providing advice on parliamentary procedure to the board’s chairperson.
Bombace has been a member of the board since 2008, and a resident of the community for over 60 years. He serves on the board’s public safety, economic development, and housing committees.
“This is a trial-and-error process,” Bombace said during the May 23 board meeting. “If it works, it works. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t.”
Leavitt was also born and raised in the district, attending PS 105, JHS 127 and Columbus High School. He was appointed to the Community Board in 1989 and has served on the following committees: Youth, Health and Social Services, Rules, Bylaws and the Morris Park/Pelham Parkway/Van Nest Committee. He is currently co-chair of the Public Safety Committee.
The board did a major overhaul of its by-laws last month, including implementing new term limits, as well as staggering its election process, with help from Leavitt.
The changes come after long-time chairman Dom Castore passed away last November, leaving the board under the leadership of then vice chairman Anthony Vitaliano.
The new chairman said the by-laws were in desperate need of updating, since they had not been revised since 2006.
The new laws went into effect on Wednesday, May 1, and include about 24 changes, with 14 of them significant policy changes.
Vitaliano said he thinks the new position will add civility to meetings.
“It will add a little more stability at the meetings and add some parliamentary guidelines,” Vitaliano said. “I think it will keep people in check and keep the meetings peaceful.”
Leavitt agreed, stating he thinks the position “is an important one and can ensure that the board can focus on addressing of life issues that affect the community.”
“I was honored to be a candidate for Sergeant-at-Arms and I appreciate the support that I received,” Leavitt said. “But I have every confidence that Joe Bombace will succeed in his new position, and I congratulate him on his election.”
Leavitt added that “Joe is an advocate for the community and is very knowledgeable about the issues facing the Community Board. Joe and I are friends and I look forward to working with him.”
Kirsten Sanchez can be reach via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (718) 742-3394