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Here's how Greg Landsman's Cincinnati City Council replacement will be chosen

Reggie Harris stands at podium with city of cincinnati seal
Jason Whitman
/
WVXU
Cincinnati Council Member Reggie Harris at his swearing in, January 2022.

The search is on to replace outgoing Cincinnati City Councilmember Greg Landsman, who is off to Congress.

The city charter dictates how successors for council seats are chosen. When they take office, each councilmember designates another councilmember or multiple councilmembers to choose who will take their seat until the next election.

Landsman recently designated Councilmember Reggie Harris to pick his replacement — a change-up from his initial filing naming all of his Democratic Party colleagues on council.

"What we're trying to do is create a process where everyone who wants to apply can apply," he said. "The community can weigh in very clearly about what kinds of qualities they're looking for, and then council can have a conversation publicly."

Harris says he's committed to finding someone who will carry on the work council has been engaged in for the last year and be ready to run a robust campaign to win election next year. The application includes questions about support for Democratic Party platform items like employee bargaining rights, abortion access, living wages and affordable housing. It also asks questions related to electability — if the applicant has ever campaigned for public office before.

"We're going to cast a broad net, both proactively and having people apply," Harris said. "The application process, one, is a resume and a cover letter, so pretty standard, but (also), a list of questions that begins to elicit the applicant's values."

The application is live on Harris' page on the city's website. They close Nov. 27. Harris says he will bring those applications to council's Public Safety Committee Nov. 29. After receiving feedback, Harris says he hopes to select the next councilmember by the week of Dec. 5.

Nick Swartsell is a general assignment reporter for WVXU. Before his current role, he worked on the station’s Cincinnati Edition program as assistant producer and was a journalist for outlets in Cincinnati, Washington, D.C., and Texas prior to that. When he’s not reporting, he likes exploring places he probably shouldn’t on his bike, taking photos, and growing corn, tomatoes and peppers that are, in all honesty, much too hot for any practical use. He is from Hamilton. You can find him at @nswartsell on Twitter.