BOZEMAN — Former Bozeman City Commissioner Michael Wallner resigned from his position late last week, making this the second resignation from the Bozeman City Commission in about 6 months.
So what’s to come should look like a familiar process.
“When I woke up that morning and read the press release, I’m like, 'oh my goodness, here we go again!'” said Deputy Mayor Terry Cunningham.
State statute states an appointment to a vacant commission seat must be made within 30 days.
So, the application process to fill former Commissioner Wallner’s seat is now open and the selected candidate will fill the term for the remainder of 2021.
Qualified applicants should be registered to vote, a U.S. citizen and a resident of Bozeman.
“It’s really easy for candidates to apply. All you have to do in order to apply is make sure you’re qualified and then you have to submit a statement of interest of no more than 1000 words about why you think you’d be a good candidate for the city commission,” said Melody Mileur, communications coordinator with the city of Bozeman.
Last fall, the Commission selected current Bozeman City Commissioner Jennifer Madgic to fill a vacant seat after former Bozeman Mayor Chris Mehl resigned.
The appointment faced some opposition after the majority of public comment went towards another candidate, Christopher Coburn.
“What this process is not is a campaign. So it’s a job application where you list your qualifications, maybe some letters of references, but it is specifically not a campaign,” said Cunningham.
Coburn, who announced his candidacy for the November 2021 Bozeman City Commission election, says he’ll take another swing at applying for the open seat and run for the seat in November.
Cunningham says every commissioner has their own criteria for picking a candidate and Bozeman residents will have the opportunity to make their own choice later this fall.
“I’ve got four things I’m looking for,” said Cunningham.
“A demonstrated record of community service. Some service on either a citizens’ advisory board or some organizational board, a knowledge of how the commission operates so they can hit the ground running. And whether or not we can fill a gap in our current commission, either demographically, socio-economically or in terms of a skill set that we need.”
The deadline to apply is 9 am on Monday, March 29th, 2021.
You can learn more about how to apply for the Bozeman City Commission seat by visiting the city’s website: https://www.bozeman.net/city-projects/city-commission-vacancy-appointment