Yesterday, the city’s new City Council President, Brandon Scott, issued a media advisory informing residents of the process to fill the vacancy left by Scott after his rise to the citywide position just last week.
The third-term councilman from the city’s second district will now oversee the process that will select a member of his old East Baltimore district to serve out the remainder of his term. In accordance with Baltimore City Council Rule 5-11, the Council President was tasked with forming a Vacancy Nominating Committee which will recommend a nominee for Scott’s seat to the full body of the City Council. The fourteen members, which include Scott as Council President, will then have an opportunity to vote for or against the person selected by this committee.
Unlike other jurisdictions, which call for a special election to occur once a council seat is vacated, Baltimore City’s Charter calls for the members of the city council to be the final voice in the selection of the next councilperson. Scott served as the councilman of the 2nd district since 2011, when at the ripe old age of 27 he successfully won the seat vacated by retiring Councilman Nicholas D’Adamo. He was elected by his colleagues to fill the vacant council president seat just last week, after Council President Bernard ‘Jack’ Young ascended to the position of mayor following the resignation of Mayor Catherine Pugh, in the wake of her Healthy Holly children’s book scandal.
Now it will be left up to a 13-member vacancy nominating committee, along with the thirteen city council members and Council President Scott, as to who joins this body for the next eighteen months. The members of the committee were selected by Scott, and include two sitting council members, Zeke Cohen (D-01) and Shannon Sneed (D-13), along with eleven community leaders within the second council district. Sneed, a Scott ally and member of the same political club, BEST, will chair the nominating committee. According to the city’s rules, Scott had to select two council members whose district boundaries border that of the 2nd district, and had to appoint at least thirteen, and no more than twenty-five, committee members.
The committee will conduct a public hearing on Thursday, May 30, 2019 at 5:00 p.m. down at City Hall, at which time they will conduct public interviews of the candidates who have submitted their name for consideration in filling the vacant council seat. Individuals interested in applying for the position must submit their resumes to the Office of Council Services by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, May 24th either by mail or email. Any person applying for the position must be a citizen of the United States and have resided within the city’s second council district for at least one year prior to their appointment, as well as being a registered voter of Maryland.
It only takes a simple majority vote of the nominating committee to select the person they intend to fill the vacancy, whose name shall be reported to the council within thirty days of the public hearing. If for some reason the members of the City Council fail to reach a majority vote for the nominee given to them by the nominating committee, it will then be left up to the nominating committee to promptly reconvene and offer up another recommendation before the next city council meeting.
Those looking to submit their resumes for consideration can do so by emailing it to: 2ndDistrictVacancy@gmail.com or by mail to: 100 N. Holliday Street, Baltimore, MD. 21202 – Room 415. Address all correspondence to Mr. Larry Greene, Office of Council Services.
The members of the nominating committee are as follows:
Councilwoman Shannon Sneed, 13th District (Chair)
Councilman Zeke Cohen, 1st District
Barbara Jackson, Frankford Improvement Association
Gloria Jenkins, Regional Management
Winette Downer, Cedonia Community Association
William ‘Pete’ Moody, Gardenville Neighborhood Association
Chet Brown, Brown Tisdale Inc.
Rita Crews, Belair Edison Community Association
Kate Scherr-Adams, KS Solutions
Michael Karasik, Glenham Belhar Community Association
Erica Wernery-Mullin, East Rosemont Community Association
Patrick Morgan, Highlandtown Community Association
William Murphy, Frankford Estate Homeowner Association