Maitland Mayor Doug Kinson handed in his resignation letter on Thursday, giving a little more than the traditional two weeks notice.
Under Florida’s Resign to Run Law, Kinson had to resign from his Maitland post before the qualifying window opened for Orange County Commission’s District 5 seat, of which he is a candidate. The resignation will not take effect until the night before the District 5 term would begin, Jan. 4.
“I’m moving ahead with the county and moving Maitland forward as well,” Kinson said.
If Kinson isn’t elected to the Commission, he cannot keep his mayoral position. That leaves 16 months on his term that will be carried out by the city’s vice mayor.
The vice mayor position, which has historically been a ceremonial one, has become weighty since Kinson announced his run for County Commission.
Councilwoman Bev Reponen, the current vice mayor, has already finished her year. A new vice mayor is scheduled to be chosen at the City Council’s June 28 meeting, with the notion that that person will serve as the city’s mayor from January 2011 to April 2012.
Many on Council, including Kinson, have pushed to change the city charter so that a mayor who cannot finish his or her term can be replaced through a special election.
A charter change would require a voter referendum and there’s no time to get that on the county’s November ballot. Maitland would have to host their own referendum election, an expensive measure that’s unlikely in a tough budget year, Kinson said.
Councilman Phil Bonus has recommended a full charter review, which would be done by a committee of citizens and examine all parts of the charter. Kinson said he also favors that approach.
Kinson is vying for the seat held by Winter Park resident Bill Segal, who is running for Orange County mayor. Also in the race is former District 5 Commissioner and Winter Park resident Ted Edwards. Candidates can qualify for the race between June 14 and June 18.