After it failed to reach consensus Monday night, the Decorah City Council scheduled a special meeting for Tuesday, July 22, at 7:30 p.m. to again consider an appointment for the Ward 1 vacancy.
John Franzen, who had represented Ward 1, resigned from his position June 21 after he took a new job that conflicted with serving on the Council.
Monday night, the Council voted by ballot on the two applicants for the vacancy: Jarrad Walter and Ward 5 Council member Randy Schissel. Due to redistricting following the 2010 census, Schissel now lives in the new Ward 1 and will be up for re-election this fall. Schissel said he wanted to apply for the Ward 1 opening because that is the Ward he now lives in.
Council members voted twice on the two applicants, with the results the same both times. Council members Gary Rustad, Paul Wanless and Jody Niess votes in favor of Schissel, while Rachel Vagts and Carolyn Corbin voted in favor of Walter.
Four votes were needed to appoint a new Council member. If the Council can't reach an agreement at next week's special meeting, the city will be required to hold a special election, which will cost an estimated $2,000. Whoever is elected at a special election would serve until the end of the year. If the Council appoints someone to fill the vacancy, that person would serve until the city election in November.
All Council members, except Vagts, are up for election this fall.
For complete story, see Thursday's Decorah Journal.