August 19, 2022 |
The Saratoga Town Council remains short-handed. Ben Spaulding resigned his seat in July. During the council meeting on August 2nd, discussion of filling the empty council seat was postponed for two weeks to provide more time for potential applicants to express interest in the position. As of that time only one person, Kathy Beck, had submitted an official letter of interest. Beck currently is a member of the Saratoga Recreation Commission and the Platte Valley Community Center Joint Powers Board.
During council discussion at the beginning of the meeting, Councilman Jon Nelson, attending via a remote internet connection, asked if any action had been taken on filling the seat.
Pictured above: File photo of Saratoga Town Hall/Police Department. Photo by Cali O’Hare/Bigfoot 99.
Mayor Creed James was referring to Jane France, the town attorney. The meeting moved on to other business, but the topic of the vacant council seat came up during “Reports from Departments.” Beck’s letter of interest is still the only one received from the public.
Questions were then raised about exactly how long someone appointed to the term would serve if they accepted the position. Spaulding took office on January 5, 2021. He was elected to serve a four-year term. The council was unclear what the statute requires for filling his seat — whether a replacement appointed by the mayor would serve remainder of the year or the remainder of Spaulding’s term.
The statute, Ordinance 15-1-107 C states, “If a vacancy is determined to exist, the governing body shall appoint an eligible person to the office who shall serve until his successor is elected at the next general municipal election and qualified.” It’s unclear whether the Spaulding’s successor could be placed on this November’s general election ballot. Council tabled the decision is until the next meeting.