Election to replace late Tucker city councilmember may be months away

Tucker City Councilmember Bill Rosenfeld. Photo provided by the city of Tucker

Tucker, GA — Tucker City Councilmember Bill Rosenfeld unexpectedly passed away in January, leaving a vacancy on the city council.

But an election to elect a new member to the District 1, Post 2 seat may be months away, according to a spokesperson for the city. Rosenfeld had won reelection to his second term in November 2019.

Matt Holmes, a spokesperson for the city said “it is still uncertain” when the city might hold a special election for the vacant city council seat.

“According to the county, the special election could be held in March, June, September or November,” Holmes said. “March didn’t give us enough time, so June would be the next closest option. The Mayor and Council need to set the date. I would anticipate them doing that in the coming weeks.”

Holmes doesn’t expect it will be an agenda item at the city’s upcoming work session, though that could change, and said the city will be notifying the public as soon as a date is set.

The city’s charter doesn’t provide a specific timeline for when an election should be held following a vacancy if it occurs more than 12 months before the expiration of a council member’s term. A city’s charter is essentially its constitution, dictating how the city operates.

“The office of a councilmember shall become vacant upon the incumbent’s death, resignation, forfeiture of office, or removal from office in any manner authorized by this Charter or the general laws of the State of Georgia,” the city’s charter says. “A vacancy in the office of a councilmember shall be filled for the remainder of the unexpired term by a special election if such vacancy occurs 12 months or more prior to the expiration of the term of that office. If such vacancy occurs within 12 months of the expiration of the term of that office, the mayor shall appoint a successor for the remainder of the term, subject to the approval of the city council or those members remaining. This provision shall also apply to a temporary vacancy created by the suspension from office of a councilmember.”

While the city can elect a new person to serve in Rosenfeld’s seat, it can’t replace what the city lost when he passed away.

People in town often talk about The Tucker Way. It’s the genteel manner in which neighbors greet each other; the excited chit-chat at the start of a packed City Council meeting; the generosity extended to strangers. A community builder, a businessman and friend, Tucker City Councilmember William “Bill” Corey Rosenfeld, Sr. personified The Tucker Way.

To learn more about him, his life and his legacy, click here.

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