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Students spend time as mayor

April 26, 2006|by ANDREW SCHOTZ

Hagerstown had four mayors at Tuesday's city council meeting - including three who still are in elementary school.

Mayor Robert E. Bruchey II, who officially holds the job, gave up his seat three times to students who wrote essays for a statewide contest.

Daniel Baechtel, Aaliyah Burnett and Rachael Isbister - fourth-graders at Bester Elementary School - each took Bruchey's seat for parts of the meeting.

Bruchey stood over each child's shoulder and coached.

"Approval of minutes," Bruchey whispered in Daniel's ear.

"Approval of minutes," Daniel repeated into the microphone.

Daniel then asked, "Can I get a motion?" "Any discussion?" "All in favor?" and "Opposed?" - each at the right time - before declaring that the motion to approve had carried.

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After a few more items on the agenda, Aaliyah took over.

Observers smiled each time she called for the adoption of "a revolution" instead of "a resolution."

"It's nice to see a female mayor sitting in that chair," Councilwoman Kelly S. Cromer said.

Rachael took over for Aaliyah.

Proud family members watched from the audience.

Daniel was accompanied by his mother, Susan Baechtel.

Aaliyah was with her grandmother, Diana Flook.

Rachael had the biggest group. Her father, James D'Errico, and her mother, Colleen D'Errico, were there, along with her brother, Nathan Isbister, and her sister, Shian D'Errico.

Maryland Municipal League and the Maryland Mayors' Association sponsored the "If I Were Mayor, I Would ..." essay contest.

City Clerk Donna K. Spickler said two more Bester students will serve as Hagerstown's mayor at the next council meeting.

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