Judge rules city not properly served in special election lawsuit hearing

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Residents will have to wait to find out if there will be a special election to fill open commission Seat 2.

The city was in court on Friday morning. A judge was scheduled to decide whether the city violated its own rules in deciding not to hold a special election after commissioners couldn’t appoint an interim commissioner after two attempts, per the city charter. If commissioners can’t agree, the charter states the city must hold an election within 60 days.

Two residents filed lawsuits against the city alleging the city is not following its rules. City officials say it is impossible for the city to hold a special election by the deadline outlined in the charter.

But Judge Jeffrey Gillen pushed the hearing back after he determined resident J. Reeve Bright improperly served the city. In court, Bright said he followed the judge’s orders while the city said he didn’t.

Gillen will give Bright another opportunity to serve the city before scheduling a hearing.

It is unclear when the hearing will be scheduled.