OnFocus – The City of Marshfield Common Council Tuesday night addressed options on what can be done with the City’s vacant mayor position.
In accordance with Wisconsin Statutes Chapter 17 .23(1 ), Council has three options to fill the vacant Mayor position through the current term until the 2022 spring election:
- Solicit applications from interest parties, including letters of interest/resumes, in which candidates will present themselves to the Council. The Council would then vote to appoint a successor to complete the balance of the current term.
- Hold a special election. Based upon information provided by the County Clerk, the election would be held 62-77 days after the order is signed by the Council.
- Allow the Council President to fulfill the required duties of the mayor position, while the position remains vacant until the next municipal election is held.
City Clerk Deb Hall explained that if option 1 were pursued, the elected person would need to circulate election papers again in December to run for the position in early 2022 as that is when the term would be complete.
Hall added that a special election would cost approximately $15,000-$20,000. She noted that currently there is a $250/month cost related to maintaining election equipment with the County. This would be in place until a decision is made whether to purse an election this year or not.
Alderman Tom Buttke said that he would like to wait until the next scheduled election to decide. Alderman Adam Fischer said he would choose that the Council President fulfill the role until the regular election in April.
(At the next Common Council meeting, members will elect a Council President and welcome newly-elected District 4 Alderman Brian Varsho.)
Alderwoman Rebecca Spiros asked for more information about other options, such as pursuing a change of government form (which would require a charter ordinance).
Alderman Ed Wagner requested an election take place soon.
“This community needs to be healed and the longer we delay this hearing the worse off we are,” said Wagner. “I would like to see that election held as soon as possible, so that we have some mandate, somebody with a mandate one way or the other that can help lead the City and bring peace to the Council. That’s why I’m supporting it the way I am.”
There will be further discussion and action taken at the meeting in two weeks.
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