VOL. 126 | NO. 142 | Friday, July 22, 2011
Council to Appoint 13th Member
By Bill Dries
Memphis City Council members should be back up to full strength by the end of the day Friday, July 22.
The council meets for the second time in a week Friday at 8 a.m. with one item on the agenda – appointing a citizen to the vacant District 7 council seat.
(Follow the council deliberations in real time on Twitter at @tdnpols, or catch a roundup after the meeting at The Daily News Online, www.memphisdailynews.com.)
Fourteen citizens have applied for the five-month appointment, which runs through the end of the year, filling out the term of former council member Barbara Swearengen Ware.
Ware resigned in June as she accepted pre-trial diversion on a charge of official misconduct. She had been under suspension since late 2010 when she was indicted on the charge of using her office to bypass mandatory auto inspections for herself and others over several years.
Among the contenders for the appointment is Michael Steven Moore, Ware’s son, as well as businessman Henry Hooper, who was appointed to a super district council seat to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of Rickey Peete but then lost a bid for election to a full four-year term in 2007.
The field is a mixture of those seeking just the appointment and those who are also running for the seat in the Oct. 6 city elections.
The other candidates are Novella Smith Arnold, Berlin Boyd, Lawrence Braden, Craig Cardwell, Evelyn Fields, Travis Green, Scott Guidry, Lee Harris, Theodore King, Ian Randolph, Samuel Thompson and Tonnie White.
Cardwell, Harris and Randolph as well as Moore had pulled petitions to run in October for the seat.
As part of the application process, the contenders had to get 25 signatures on a qualifying petition and just as in the process for getting on the ballot, the Shelby County Election Commission checked the names to make sure they were voters who lived in the district.
Each of the 14 applicants will get two minutes to make their case to the council at Friday’s meeting.
The council members will then make nominations and the first nominee to get seven votes will be sworn in immediately.
Not everyone who has applied is guaranteed a nomination by a council member. Most of the field will probably not be nominated if past council appointments are any guide.