WEST PALM BEACH, FLA. The fate of West Palm Beach’s District 5 commission seat, left vacant by the death of Bill Moss, could soon be in the hands of Mayor Jeri Muoio and the remaining commissioners.
The city commission will meet Monday at 5:00 p.m. at City Hall to likely initiate the appointment process.
Last week the mayor said, "It's clear in our charter that we have to appoint. And as much as many of us would have liked to have held an election we can't. Our charter is very clear on the situation and we have to appoint, and those are the rules we have to abide by."
Last week City Attorney Claudia McKenna said she consulted with numerous election lawyers and decided the charter calls for a year-long appointment, followed by an election in March 2013.
But the charter does not directly address a commissioner who hasn’t been sworn into office yet. Moss’ sixth term was set to expire this week.
If the plan to appoint stands, the city would begin advertising for the position on April 6 and fill it by April 25.
But some folks living in West Palm Beach are urging the city to hold an entirely new election, claiming it’s the only fair way to pick a new commissioner.
Commissioner Kimberly Mitchell said that because Moss will never be sworn into a seventh term, the vacancy should be filled by special election.
Andrew Abramson/Palm Beach Post contributed to this report
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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