Before he travels to west Africa in 2016, Soldotna Mayor Nels Anderson would like to save the city the cost of having a special election.
That proposition proved trickier in practice then it was in theory, but Anderson and city administration believe they have come up with a way to make it happen.
The Soldotna City Clerk’s office on Wednesday announced that Anderson had submitted a letter of resignation and was requesting reappointment to continue serving in the position until the next regular election in October.
The mayor’s current three-year term is up in October 2017.
“We’ve been trying for a long time to figure out how to avoid a special election,” Anderson said.
Currently, he and his wife are scheduled to leave the country on a mission trip for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in January. However, if Anderson were to serve until he is set to leave, the city would have to hold a special election to replace him. Alaska statute does not permit the mayor to resign at a designated time, however the city attorney opined that Anderson could legally resign and be reappointed until October.
Anderson expects to be gone for between 18-23 months and said members of the current city council are interested in the upcoming mayoral vacancy.
The Soldotna City Council will consider the mayor’s resignation request during its July 8 meeting.
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