Pezzulli-Mattli ’13: Local parents run for local office

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Adam Schasel, Staff Reporter

This is the first half of a two-part series on 2013 Fairview elections. The second half, profiling former Lovejoy parent Darion Culbertson and his running mate, will be posted as election day approaches May 11.

Junior Michael Pezzulli is a quiet kid. A trumpet player in the Wind Ensemble and Jazz band, Pezzulli prefers to stay out of the school spotlight.

But anybody that drives through the Fairview area  would see his name plastered on signs across town. That is because his father, trial attorney Michael Pezzulli, is running for mayor of Fairview.

Though he may not be running himself, the younger Pezzulli says his father is the right man for the job.

“He’s not running to be some sort of big-shot politician,” Pezzulli said. “He’s just running to make sure things go right for the town.”

Pezzulli Sr., along with his running mate for city council, Anton W. Mattli, are both former Fairview city council members. They both have children who have attended or are attending schools in the Lovejoy district, and have lived in Fairview for many years. Pezzuli has even coached Sloan Creek Middle School’s UIL Modern Oratory team and assisted the high school’s mock trial team. the  When term limits prevented Sim Israeloff, the current mayor, from running again, Pezzulli and Mattli decided to throw their hats into the ring and run on a platform of financial responsibility and government transparency.

“We have decided to seek election to the Town Council to insure the financial fitness of our Town through rational, subjective, needs based accounting and legislation,” Pezzulli said. “If you just look across the country you will see town after town, city after city going bankrupt as a result of overburdening their communities with unneeded or reckless spending.”

From the Pezzulli team’s viewpoint, the construction of a Noah’s Event Center that was completely funded by taxpayer dollars is one local example of reckless spending. Ideally, citizens wishing to rent out the event center for a night would cover the cost of installation and generate revenues for the city. But Pezzulli and Mattli argue that with a Courtyard Marriot and event center at the nearby Village at Allen, Fairview’s event center could amount to nothing more than an expensive dust collector.

But regardless of whether it receives business or not, Mattli and Pezzulli say the center is a misuse of taxpayer money.

“As we are both former Council Members we recognize that there is a significant need for a change in the leadership of the Town to insure the rational allocation of our citizen’s tax dollars,” Pezzulli said.

Pezzulli says his experience as a trial lawyer and years as a local civil servant puts him a cut ahead of his opponent, former Lovejoy parent Darion Culbertson.

“I served on the Fairview Town Council, from 2002 to 2010,” Pezzulli said. “Then I continued my public service as a Captain in the Civil Air Patrol, assuming the position of Squadron Commander of the local Civil Air Patrol Squadron, TX295 in 2010. I served for two years as Squadron Commander and then voluntarily relinquished my command to run for mayor.”

Mattli, a native of Switzerland, was a financier with international ties before settling down in Fairview.

“I ran large divisions at Fortune 100 banks,” Mattli said. “After moving to Fairview in 2005, I was a member of the committee that drafted Fairview’s Town Charter, served on Fairview’s Telecommunication Committee, was a member of Lovejoy ISD’s Long Term Planning Committee and served 4 years on Fairview’s Town Council from 2007 to 2011.”

When asked if the race has affected the lives of either of their children, Mattli says his son has become an avid political aspirant.

“My son Cedrick is in eighth grade and closely follows international, national and local politics, resulting in healthy debates at the dinner table,” Mattli said. “He often joins me when I talk to Fairview neighbors about the campaign and loves to give me strategic advice; sometimes I feel that he should run.”

        Pezzulli Jr. is proud of his father, but says the election has not had much of an effect on him.

        “I guess people notice it and ask me if my dad is running for mayor,” Pezzulli said. “But it hasn’t really affected me in any major way.”

Although the glitz and glamour of national elections are absent on the local level, both Pezzulli and Mattli stress the importance of voting in local elections such as this one.

“It is absolutely critical to vote in local elections,” Pezzulli Sr. said. “Your locally elected officials make huge decisions about your lives that are often undervalued. Local governments influence safety and security policy, the municipal court system, zoning laws and directly affect the quality of life of all citizens.”

In addition to the direct effect local government has on citizens’ lives, in a small town such as Fairview, voter turnout can often make the difference between who wins and who loses.

“In the May 2011 elections for a council seat on the Fairview Town Council, in the one contested race, the total number of votes cast was only around 950 votes,” Pezzulli said. “With less than 1,000 total votes cast, this means that every vote counts. Many times races are won by only one or two votes.”

 

A link to Pezzulli and Mattli’s website can be found here. The Pezzulli-Mattli Facebook page can be found here, while a more detailed platform can be found here. Fairview citizens can cast their vote May 11 at Lovejoy Elementary, from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.