Grosse Pointe Farms city council has decided the city will hold a special election in February to fill the vacant council seat now open due to the death of Mayor Pro Tem Joseph Leonard.
The council had previously published an announcement calling for interested residents to submit a letter of interest for the council position.
Nine individuals responded to the vacancy announcement, among them a former Grosse Pointe Public Schools school board president, John Steininger, and former Councilman Leonard's daughter, Patricia M. Leonard.
During a regular council meeting Monday, the council discussed their options of appointing an individual to the seat, who would serve until the next regular election in November 2013, or hold a special election and the elected candidate would serve the remainder of Leonard's term until 2015.
The council met in September for a work session and instructed city manager Shane Reeside contact all nine applicants to ask if they would commit to not running in the November 2013 election if appointed and also if they would be willing to run in a special election in February 2013.
Reeside reported Monday that three of the nine interested parties had said they would still run for election if appointed and three also indicated they would be willing to run in a special election for the seat.
After little discussion, Councilman Peter Waldmeir moved to hold a special election in February and the council passed the motion 5-1, with Councilwoman Therese Joseph the only dissenting vote.
The special election will cost the city about $10,000 Reeside has estimated. The money will come from the contingency fund in this year's city budget.
Reeside said candidate packets will be available next week at the city's administration office for anyone interested in running for the council seat.
Candidates must either have a nomination petition with 50-75 residents' signatures or pay a filing fee of $100, in addition to residency and identity verification requirements to be eligible to run in the February election.
The deadline for filing a nomination petition to run in the special election is Monday, Jan. 7, 2013.
The special election will be held Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2013.