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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

LC Comm'r Application Process: Nuts & Bolts

Section 208 of Lehigh County's Home Rule Charter [HRC] gives the Board 45 days to fill a vacant elected office. The person appointed must be a member of the same political party as the person who left office.

Section 202 of the HRC requires that an appointed Commissioner must have resided and been registered to vote in the County for at least one year before being appointed.

Section 208 of the HRC provides that the appointee shall serve until a successor is elected at the next scheduled municipal election occurring at least 60 days after the vacancy has occurred. In this case, that means the 2011 municipal election. The term of office of the elected successor will commence on the first Monday of January in the year following his or her election, i.e. Monday, January 2, 2012).

Ordinance 1991 - No. 128 amends the Administrative Code to establish a procedure for filling vacancies. This procedure requires that applications be sought via newspaper notice and by notifying the political party of the person who left office. Applications shall be received by the 10th day after the effective date of the vacancy.

This newspaper notice states, "Individuals interested in seeking appointment should submit a letter of application to Dean N. Browning, Chairman, Lehigh County Board of Commissioners, 17 S. Seventh St., Allentown, PA 18101-2400. Applications must be physically received in the Board of Commissioners Office by Thursday, January 21, 2010 at 4:00 P.M."

Applications are then forwarded to the Intergovernmental & Appointments Committee, which is to make a recommendation by the 30th day after the effective date of the vacancy. The full Board has until the 45th day to act on the recommendation. If the committee’s recommendation is turned down, nominations may be made from the dais at a Board meeting.

The timeline for filling this vacancy is as follows:

Monday, January 11 - Vacancy Occurs

Thursday, January 21 - Applications deadline

Wednesday, February 10 - Deadline for recommendation by Intergovernmental & Appointments

Thursday, February 25 - Deadline for Board to fill vacancy


Joe Hilliard said...

Now this is an instance that R's should actually vote for a D - per the law.

Of course, I hope they make all efforts to seek out a Blue Dog fiscally conservative Dem!

They are out there as the local Tea Party movement proves.

Anonymous said...

I nominate Lew Herschman or Dennis Pearson.

Anonymous said...

Write this down. The next commissioner will be Bill Hansell. You heard it hear.

Anonymous said...

I think it should be Jim Hickey!