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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2013 - 2014 Regular Session


Posted: December 6, 2012 02:50 PM
From: Senator Kim L. Ward
To: All Senate members
Subject: Memo #11 – County Commissioner Vacancy

I plan to introduce legislation that would amend section 501 (relating to election; vacancies) of the County Code of 1955 to direct the court of common pleas to appoint the recommendation of the county political party committee to fill a vacancy in the office of county commissioner.

Current law requires the court of common pleas to appoint an individual to fill the county commissioner vacancy. That individual only has to be a registered elector of the county and be a member of the same political party as the outgoing commissioner. The individual appointed serves until the end of the unexpired term.

The drawback to this approach is that it politicizes the court of common pleas to fill the vacancy.

My legislation would direct the outgoing commissioner’s county political party committee to select an appointee. The committee would do this through a conferee process or any other process provided for in the committee’s bylaws. The court of common pleas will then appoint the recommendation of the county political party committee to fill the vacant position.

If you have any questions regarding this legislation, please do not hesitate to contact my office at 717-787-6063.

Introduced as SB146