Politics

There are 16 people still in the running for the Metro Council seat vacated by Dan Johnson last month.

They will go before Metro Council at a special meeting on Monday, Dec. 11, to be interviewed by council members. Council must choose a replacement for Johnson, who was removed in November following three allegations of sexual harassment, before a Dec. 17 deadline. The body plans to select and swear in Johnson’s replacement at the Dec. 14 council meeting, which is the last one of the year.

Tony Hyatt, spokesman for the council’s majority caucus, said the interview process is a simple one.

“They’ll explain to the council why they want to be the councilperson for District 21,” he told WFPL in November. “I’m sure several council people will ask them questions about what their goals and objectives are and then.”

Four applicants from the original pool were eliminated due to questions about their residency in District 21, Metro Council said in a news release on Monday. Another application that came through the mail — from 70-year-old John Witt, who said he unsuccessfully ran for the seat in 2006 and 2014 — was also approved by the Jefferson County Attorney’s Office on Monday.

Vince Jarboe owns a State Farm agency in District 21 and is president of the nonprofit economic development group Southwest Dream Team. Jarboe said he would like to see a younger person in tune with technology and what millennials want in the seat. Such a person could draw young people and different kinds of businesses to the district, he said.

“I think that they could give a lot of the other Metro Council members a different way to look at things, some things that they might not be thinking of,” Jarboe said. “That’s why the reason I think a younger person could maybe interject some new ideas, and the other Metro Council members can listen to voices they may or may not be listening to now.”

Johnson, despite some troubles, did great things for District 21, Jarboe said. Character is an important consideration for the next council person, who should care about their community, listen to constituents and work hard for them, said Jarboe.

This post has been updated.

Amina Elahi is WFPL's City Reporter.