A new president and vice president will be elected at the next Brainerd City Council meeting.
Then, the council will put a call out to residents to apply for the vacant at-large seat, which was left empty after council President Bonnie Cumberland died. Council member Dale Parks currently serves as vice president.
Just how to go about the process of choosing the replacement is up to the council at the meeting, which will be conducted Tuesday because of the holiday Monday, said new City Administrator Patrick Wussow.
The council will decide how long it will accept applications from residents who are interested in the seat. Usually it ranges from a week to a month, Wussow said. Though he expects it will be sooner rather than later.
Once that deadline has passed, Wussow will present each applicant to the council. The council can then decide right away who to appoint or they can hold an interview process.
Since it was an at-large seat, the applicant must be a resident of Brainerd (living anywhere within city limits) and be at least 18 years old.
“It’s a time of appeal for the council,” Wussow said. “This (vacant seat) was unplanned, unexpected. When a death happens, it’s unpredictable and there’s a lot of surprise.”
Cumberland was found dead in her home Feb. 3 after she didn’t show up at a city council meeting.
The earliest the spot could be filled would be at the March 3 meeting.
The new city council member will finish out Cumberland’s term, which is over at the end of this year. They must then run again in the election if they want to hold the seat.