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City Council Vacancy Appointment Process

Thursday, June 10, 2021 Update: 

On Monday, June 7, 2021,  the Westminster City Council was not able to fill the vacancy by majority vote within 30 days of occurrence of the vacancy, thus a special election is now required to select a person to hold the vacant office for the remainder of the unexpired term. Council is expected to take action on Monday, June 14 to adopt a resolution calling for a special election to fill this vacancy in coordination with the regularly scheduled election on November 2, 2021.

Interviews – Dates, Times, And Protocols

As of May 26, City Council has narrowed the list of all applicants to a finalist pool of eight (8). Only the finalist applicants will move forward to the public in-person interview with City Council.

LIST OF FINALIST APPLICANTS

Interview Information

Tuesday, June 1 at 6:30 p.m. – Special Meeting to conduct Finalist Applicant interviews.  

This meeting will be livestreamed for the public on the city’s YouTube channel. Only the City Council, Finalist Applicants, and City support staff will be allowed to attend the meeting in person.  

Interviews will be conducted publicly in 20-minute sessions for each candidate. Each City Council member will ask questions during the session, with follow-up questions allowed, time permitting. Each candidate will be given the option of giving an opening and/or closing statement to Council, and a 5-minute warning will be given as the interview approaches the time limit.  

There will be no public comment session during the meetings, nor will any questions from the public be accepted during the interviews.

For more information, please contact City Clerk Michelle Parker at 303-658-2161 or mparker@cityofwestminster.us.

SCHEDULE OF FINALIST INTERVIEWS

Application Process:

The application period is now closed.

Applications for the Council vacancy were accepted online Thursday, May 13 through Sunday, May 23 at 11:59 p.m. Initial List of Applicants.

On Monday, May 24, during the City Council Post Meeting, City Council agreed upon a process in which each member of Council could nominate up to ten finalists each by Wednesday, May 26. Applicants who were nominated by at least three members of Council move forward to in-person interviews to be conducted at a public meeting on Tuesday, June 1.

LIST OF FINALISTS

City Council Vacancy Background

Mayor Pro Tem Anita Seitz assumed the office of Mayor on Monday, May 10, creating a vacancy for the remainder of her previous seat’s unexpired term (2½ years). As required by the Westminster City Charter (“Charter”) Section 5.7 and Westminster Municipal Code (“WMC”) Section 1-11-4, such a vacancy must be filled by a majority vote of remaining members of the City Council. If any vacancy that the City Council is authorized to fill is not so filled within 30 days after the vacancy occurs, it shall be filled for the remainder of the unexpired term at a special election. 

Charter Section 5.7: “Filling Vacancies in Elective Offices” states:
“(a) Any vacancy which occurs in the Council shall be filled within thirty (30) days by a majority vote of the remaining members of the Council, said appointee to hold office for any balance of the unexpired term.”

As a result, City Council has a process under way to fill the vacancy within 30 days. The appointment will be made by a majority vote of the remaining members of the City Council, and the appointee will hold office for the balance of the unexpired term. The term of Mayor Seitz’s former seat continues until November 2023.  

The City Charter does not provide specific direction on the procedures to be used to fill the vacancies. Absent a legally mandated process, City Attorney David Frankel has advised it is up to City Council to decide on a procedure. The City Council gave Staff direction on Monday, May 10, 2021 regarding their preferred procedure, which is as follows:

Qualifications and Duties

Per Westminster City Charter, § 5.1:

  • Resident of the City for at least one (1) year immediately prior to the last day for filing original nomination petitions for such office (one year prior to May 20, 2021).
  • Qualified and registered elector of the City on the last day for filing original nomination petition (May 20, 2021), and throughout tenure of office.
  • No person shall be eligible for any elective office when in default to the City or to any other governmental unit of the State. 
  • Each candidate for elective office shall file with his or her petition an affidavit that the candidate possesses the qualifications for such office. Failure to file such affidavit shall invalidate the petition. 
  • No elective officer may be appointed to any City office or be employed by the City during the term of office for which he or she was elected or for two (2) years thereafter, provided that after the expiration of the term of office the person may be appointed as a member of an independent board or commission or fill a vacancy in the position of Councillor.

Per W.M.C., Section 4.2. Qualifications of Councilmen.

Members of the Council shall meet the eligibility requirements contained in Section 5.1 of this Charter. The Council shall be sole judge of the election and qualifications of its own members, subject only to review by the court. 
The qualifications and duties of City Councillors, as laid out by the Westminster City Code and Westminster City Charter, can be found at the following links:

Westminster City Code

Westminster City Charter

Background check required

Per City Charter, Section 5.1(d), any applicant for City Council must pass a background check. Applicants must submit a completed Affidavit of Status and Release form (which includes social security number) for this purpose.

Per Westminster City Code, Section 1-11-2(e): Any personally identifying information, other than name and address, provided by a candidate for City Council, pursuant to Charter Section 5.1(d) or in connection with a candidate petition or application for office, will be deemed as having been received in confidence and not subject to disclosure under the Colorado Open Records Act, except as may be required by an order of district court. Any such personally identifying information contained in a report, required to be maintained pursuant to Charter Section 5.1(d), shall be redacted by the City Clerk prior to disclosure of the remainder of the report.

Meetings and Time Commitment

There are four meetings per month: two regular City Council meetings, which are held on the 2nd and 4th Monday as required by City Charter; and two Study Sessions, which are held on the 1st and 3rd Monday. City Council meetings start at 7 p.m. Meeting end times vary greatly depending on the agenda. Study Sessions begin at 6:30 p.m. Meeting end times vary.  Occasionally, the City Council may opt to have a meeting on a 5th Monday of the month, when it occurs.

In addition, each council member serves as a liaison to at least one (and up to three) city boards or commissions. Additionally, council members may serve on local, regional and state boards and organizations, and regularly attend public events on weeknights and weekends.

Every Wednesday, the agenda packet for the Monday meeting (City Council Meeting or Study Session) is published, and often contains hundreds of pages of staff memoranda and back-up documentation that requires review in advance of the meeting.

Compensation

Per the Westminster Municipal Code, the salaries of the City’s elective officers shall be as follows: 

  Base 2021 Amount 2021 Annual
Mayor $1,400/month $1,517/month $18,444/year
Mayor Pro Tem $1,200/month $1,3178/month $15,804/year
Councillors $1,000/month $1,098/month $13,176/year
Monthly allowances (all) $300/month $338/month $4,068/year