BERLIN — Town Councilor Amy Daniele has resigned to focus on coaching her daughter after she earned a spot in a competive soccer program which grooms children who have the potential to perform internationally.
“She’s training pretty hard and my husband and I are driving a lot of miles...I just couldn’t get back from where we’re training in time,” Daniele said. “I don’t want to do it halfway. I don’t want to miss too many of those Town Council meetings, but my priority is my child.”
Looking back on her work on the council since being elected in November 2017, Daniele was most proud to have been able to make it easier for elderly residents to get a freeze on their property taxes, preventing the bills from eating up an increasingly large share for those on fixed incomes. “I think we did a nice job there,” she said.
She was also happy with the final budget the council adopted in June, saying that while it wasn’t perfect, they did the best job they could.
Mayor Mark Kaczynski said the Republican members of the council will meet before tonight’s council meeting to narrow down a few names they are considering to one nominee, who he expects will be voted onto the council tonight. While he didn’t give any names, he said an ideal candidate would have experience on commissions, familiarity with how council operates and bring a new background to the body.
Under the Town Charter, a vacancy must be filled by a member of the same political party for the remainder of the term, to November 2019 in this case.
Daniele said she brought her daughter to an Olympic Development Program camp in July expecting it to just be another summer camp. With 500 players attending and only 60 being considered for the program, she wasn’t expecting her daughter Taylor Daniele, 13, to make the cut. “I try to be realistic with her too, but she can reach for the stars,” she said.
“She has the strength and ability to sometimes get that ball away from a person without creating a foul or having it be a brutish kind of aggressive move. She’s very agile on her feet and she’s got good awareness of the game,” Daniele said. “She has amazed me from the very beginning.”
The program’s website says it looks to “identify players of the highest caliber on a continuing and consistent basis, which will lead to increased success for the U.S. National Teams in the international arena.”
Republicans met with Daniele to discuss ways she could continue to serve while still meeting her obligations to her daughter, but weren’t able to find a solution, Kaczynski said. “It’s a tough one, but I certainly agree that family comes first,” he said. “I don't think I could have done this job when my son was in school and he played sports too.”
For her part, Daniele said it wasn’t a decision she takes lightly, but she’s confident the council will choose someone qualified and who can embody the values she brought to the table.
“I've just been struggling because I know that people voted for me. People actually drove to voting booths and they voted for me because either they knew me or liked some thoughts that I had. It’s not lost on me that I’m potentially disappointing people,” she said.