The Chandler City Council approved a formal process Thursday for replacing Councilman and Navy reservist Martin Sepulveda, who has been called to active military duty in Iraq.
Any adult who has lived in the city for at least two years can apply by 5 p.m. Aug. 25. The council will review applications and make selections before Sept. 8.
The council will vote on a possible replacement for Sepulveda on Sept. 26.
The council discussed the language of the formal process for almost an hour Thursday before its unanimous vote.
Mayor Boyd Dunn and Councilman Matt Orlando disagreed on whether each council member should have to select a different applicant to nominate for the interview process.
Orlando said he didn’t want to be restricted from choosing the same applicant as another council member if he thought that person was best for the job.
"I would not like you forever if you took my first choice," Orlando told the mayor.
Dunn said he was trying to encourage a diverse applicant pool, but ultimately wanted the council to reach consensus on a person to fill Sepulveda’s seat until he returns or until the term expires in 2008.
It was decided council members can nominate an applicant who’s been nominated by another council member.
The council will also select three additional applicants by majority vote, leading to a pool of up to nine applicants for interviews.
Sepulveda does not get to vote in the process and did not attend Thursday’s meeting. He earlier recommended that former Chandler Mayor Jim Patterson fill his seat. Patterson said Thursday that he would apply in the formal selection process.
If the council can’t reach a majority vote on one applicant, the seat will remain empty until Sepulveda returns or his term expires.