The Tucson City Council met today in Study Session at City Hall Chambers to decide on their procedure to select a resident in Ward 2 to fill that vacant Council seat for the unexpired term (till December 2011). Democrat Rodney Glassman resigned last Tuesday April 6 to run for U.S. Senate in Arizona.
Procedure proposed by Councilmember Regina Romero and unanimously voted on by the rest of the Council: that an applicant would have five business days to submit a resume/cover letter with their eligibility requirements to the City Clerk, to be posted on that office’s website for City residents to review and comment on. Then the Council will hear for 5 minutes from qualified applicants (as determined by the City Clerk) at the next regularly scheduled Council meeting, as an official public hearing. Councilmember Steve Kozachik requested time after each applicant speaks to ask questions of the applicants, which was agreed upon.
Media reports had stated that two interested applicants for this seat are Democrat Paul Cunningham, a Pima County juvenile probation officer, and Republican neighborhood activist Lori Oien, who lost by 817 votes (in Ward 2) to Glassman on November 6, 2007. Oien lost to Glassman in all six council wards: 39,556 (61.15%) votes to 25,004 (38.66%) votes. Cunningham is the son of George Cunningham, former LD 13 State House Rep. and Senator, and is the 1st Vice President of Democrats of Greater Tucson.
Other names that have surfaced as possible applicants are Democrat Clarence Boykins, who ran for an LD 30 State House seat in 2006, and founder of the MLK Birthday Celebration, and Republican Ken Morgan, an owner and partner in a new local small business venture, DLM Associates LLC, a renewable energy consulting firm.
The last time the City Council appointed someone to replace a Councilmember was when Democrat Ward 3 Councilman Tom Saggau resigned in October, 1995 and was replaced by Democrat attorney Michael Crawford.
According to the Tucson Charter (Chapter VIII, section 2a) a person must be a resident and qualified Elector of the City for at least 3 years immediately prior to becoming a candidate for selection, and a resident of the ward at least 1 year immediately prior. This would eliminate newcomers to Ward 2 to apply. The Tucson charter also states that the successor to the vacant seat has to receive 4 affirmative votes from the Mayor and Council to be appointed.
If you have any comments about those who do apply for this Ward 2 seat (especially if you live in Ward 2), contact the Mayor and Council with your feedback.
Update: Deadline to apply is 5 p.m. April 20 per City of Tucson press release: http://www.tucsonaz.gov/clerks/W2MediaRelease.pdf. These resumes will be posted on the City Clerk’s website by Wed. April 21, with the applicants to appear before the Council on April 27 for their 5 minute speech and to answer answers. A final Council vote is expected on May 4.