After a hiccup in the Killeen City Council’s attempt to put someone on the bench as presiding municipal judge earlier this month, the council is slated to make an appointment at its regular meeting tonight.
On Jan. 14, the council was forced to scratch appointing a candidate to the bench from its agenda when the person selected pulled out at the last minute. The candidate said he couldn’t meet the job requirement of attaining a full-time residency in Killeen within 180 days of being hired.
As a result, the council agreed in a closed workshop meeting Jan. 21 to appoint the runner-up candidate to the bench, said Hilary Shine, city spokeswoman. The runner-up candidate was narrowly defeated in a 4-3 consensus by the council in its original attempt to fill the bench.
The presiding municipal judge oversees traffic offenses and other Class C misdemeanors, city ordinance violations and juvenile court.
The position was advertised with a salary of $102,000.
The search for a new presiding municipal judge came following William Gibson’s announcement that he was retiring upon his tenure expiring this month.
Gibson served as interim judge in June 2009 when Barbara Weaver retired, and he was appointed to the position by the council in December 2009.
The council is also slated to solidify an ordinance calling for a general election May 10. The mayor and three at-large council seats are up for grabs.
In mid-November, Mayor Dan Corbin announced he will not seek re-election. The three at-large council members — Elizabeth Blackstone, Jonathan Okray and Jared Foster — are currently serving their first terms and are eligible to seek re-election. Mayor and council member terms are two years. Candidates are limited to three consecutive terms.
In a workshop following the regular meeting, the Military Order of the Purple Heart will brief officials on Killeen becoming a designated Purple Heart City.
Harker Heights recently became the first city in Bell County to be designated a Purple Heart City.
Texas is home to four of the 281 Purple Heart cities in the U.S.: Harker Heights, Georgetown, Kerrville and Lubbock. One county in Texas, Kerr County, bears the Purple Heart County designation.