Renton City Council has decided to leave councilmember Carol Ann Witschi’s seat vacant until a new official is elected in November.
At the Sept. 16 committee of the whole meeting, council determined since the appointment of a new official is within 90 days, they won’t appoint a new councilmember.
In August, council had decided to fill the position briefly without doing an official appointment procedure, partly because Council President Don Persson said former councilmember Rich Zwicker was willing to fill the seat. He has since withdrawn his name for consideration, Persson said, and so they’ve decided to simply wait.
“I don’t think it would be worthwhile to fill it,” Persson said at the meeting.
One of the main concerns Persson had with leaving the seat empty in August was making sure they had enough council representatives at committee meetings. At the Sept. 16 meeting councilmembers said they would make sure to show up for committees and fill in for Community Services Committee, which Witchi was chair of and hasn’t met since July.
After the August primary election, candidates Valerie O’Halloran and James Alberson moved on to run for Witschi’s seat in the general election. Witschi and her family moved to North Carolina, and her official resignation date was Sept. 1.