Harford County Democratic Central Committee To Interview Candidates For Vacant District F Seat
HAVRE DE GRACE - The Harford County Democratic Central Committee will interview five candidates to fill the vacant District F County Council seat during a meeting on Wednesday.
The committee will meet at 7:00 p.m. at the Havre de Grace Police Department. According to Henry Gibbons, committee chairman, three of the five candidates will be submitted to the County Council for further review.
The council seat was left vacant after council member Jacob Bennett was removed from office following a Circuit Court ruling in a lawsuit brought by county executive Bob Cassilly. On February 15, Judge Richard Bernhardt ruled that Bennett could not occupy his seat while simultaneously working as a Harford County Public Schools teacher.
The ruling was based on a county charter provision that states: “council member[s] shall not hold any other office of profit or employment in the government of the State of Maryland, Harford County, or any municipality within Harford County.”
Bennett has appealed the ruling and seeks to remain in office. His case will begin with Oral arguments in the Maryland Supreme Court on April 4.
The selection process for the new nominees must be completed within 60 days of the seat becoming vacant. This gives the Maryland Supreme Court a soft deadline of April 16 to deliver their decision.
If the court does not issue a decision by that date, the council will be required by the charter to fill the vacancy, potentially creating a situation where two individuals claim the seat.
The candidate interview meeting will be open to the public with limited seating.