SCRANTON — The city of Scranton now has a full council as the fifth member was selected Thursday night.
Council voted to appoint Scranton businessman Wayne Evans to fill the seat vacated by Jack Loscombe earlier this month.
Wayne Evans will soon be the fifth member of Scranton City Council.
He sat down with Newswatch 16 at his real estate office on Pittston Avenue shortly after hearing the news he was chosen to fill the open seat.
“I have a background, I think, that lends itself well to hit the ground running so I`m excited,” said Evans.
Evans is scheduled to be sworn in before council`s next meeting on July 31st to take the seat vacated by Jack Loscombe.
Loscombe resigned earlier this month for financial reasons.
Evans said he hopes to bring his experience as a businessman and a community volunteer to the table.
“I’m involved in the Elm Street program in South Side which is right down the street, we`re doing some great work there,” said Evans. “I used to be the president of the South Scranton Residents Association so I’ve been involved at the neighborhood level, Metro Action with the Chamber, Scranton Tomorrow.”
But Evans’ first vote as a member of council might be a tough one.
He might help decide if a commuter tax should be imposed on non-residents who work in the city.
That tax, known as Act 205, is expected to raise about $5 million a year and would go solely to pay for the city`s distressed pension funds.
“It`s laser focused on helping out the pension fund and that`s very important, that`s probably one of the biggest problems the city has on the financial side, I’ve never been sold on a commuter tax but it might be a little different take this time,” said Evans.
Evans is expected to serve out the remainder of Loscombe`s term, which ends in December of 2015.
He said he has no plans to run for a council seat after that.
“The next 18 months are critical, I really don`t want to be focused on a campaign, I don`t want to be involved in that side of it, I want to be involved in trying to help the city,” said Evans.
If the commuter tax is imposed next week an average non-resident making $50,000 would pay about $375 a year in Scranton.