Written by STEVE OSTERMANN
Wednesday, 06 November 2013 18:50
Board will take applications, choose member to complete term of official who resigned
The Grafton Village Board will choose a trustee to fill a newly vacated seat.
Board members agreed Monday to accept applications from village residents interested in serving the balance of Richard Rieck’s term, which runs through April 2015. Applicants will then be interviewed by the board before it picks his successor.
Rieck announced last month that he would resign, effective Nov. 5. He cited family medical reasons for ending his eight-plus years as a trustee.
In discussing options to fill the seat, Village Administrator Darrell Hofland told the board a 1997 village resolution calls for it to either appoint a successor or wait until the spring election to have voters choose a new trustee.
Trustee Jim Grant suggested leaving the seat vacant until April 2014 and then holding an election to fill the final year of Rieck’s term. However, other board members noted that approach could cause problems because the seat would appear on the ballot with other candidates seeking two-year terms.
All six trustees and the village president are elected to at-large seats rather than by wards.
“It seems to be muddy enough,” said Village President Jim Brunnquell, who urged the board to choose the appointment option.
Hofland said residents have until 4 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 27, to apply for the vacant seat. The resolution calls for the village to provide an application form, which candidates can complete and return to the village clerk along with their resume.
Candidates will be interviewed by the board, which Hofland said is expected to choose a meeting date on Nov. 18. Although the interviews will be done in open session, no public comments or questions are permitted.
Each candidate will be interviewed without the others present. The board will vote by paper ballot, with a simple majority determining the winner. If no candidate receives a majority of votes cast on the first ballot, the individual with the fewest votes will be eliminated.
That process will continue until only one candidate receives a majority of votes cast.
The last time the Village Board filled an unexpired trustee term by appointment was in September 2002. Eight residents applied for a seat vacated by Todd Gundrum, who resigned seven months before his term expired.
Former Trustee Garry McCann was chosen to fill the seat after losing a re-election bid the previous spring. He did not seek election in April 2003.