Cameron Smyth, the current city Councilman and future state Assemblyman will be leaving behind an open seat when he resigns from the council on Dec. 1.
The method of finding his replacement is up for debate between the council members, with two possible options. Either the council can appoint a replacement for Smyth, or they can call a special election. The council has 30 days to either fill the council vacancy or call an election.
An appointment would mean that the City Council would pick Smyth’s replacement, who would then serve the rest of Smyth’s elected term ending in April of 2008. Some fear that this choice could automatically give the appointee a leg up on the competition if they were to run for Smyth’s vacant seat when the term expires. There have been calls to appoint someone who vows not to run after the appointed term.
The second option is calling a special election. While any warm blooded fan of democracy loves that, the estimated cost of $175,000 may prove too much to elect someone who would hold the seat for a little over a year. Councilman Frank Ferry is a proponent of the special election; “I’m in favor of public input, I’ve always been in favor of that. The public needs to be the one to decide.”
Tonight, the council will speak on the issue as well as others on the agenda. While no decision on weather they will appoint or hold a special election will be made, they will decide the process for making that decision.
If you would like to attend the City Council meeting, it starts tonight at 6:30 at City Hall.
KHTS AM 1220 News