Absent board member resigns from DRB, city council to fill post

Peter Perry has resigned from Bainbridge’s Design Review Board.

Perry had earlier asked for a six-month leave of absence from the board, and moved to California due to a family medical issue. He has missed the last three DRB meetings.

Board Chairman Joe Dunstan announced Perry’s resignation at the end of Monday’s DRB meeting.

Earlier, Dunstan had asked Mayor Kol Medina to install a temporary board member to the DRB during Perry’s absence, and had offered two choices of candidates — Deborah Nelson and Galen Carlson — to fill the seat until Perry’s return in April 2020.

At this week’s DRB meeting, Dunstan recounted how Medina had asked the city attorney for an advice on a temporary appointment, and was told the city lacked a process for such short-term appointments.

Dunstan asked his fellow board members this week if they wanted to keep the Position 4 seat that was held by Perry open until the city normally seeks volunteers in June, or seek a candidate now to fill the remainder of Perry’s term, which runs through June 2021.

The board agreed to seek someone for the seat immediately, and the city has started accepting applications for the position.

Emails obtained by the Review through a public records request show that Perry had hoped to pick his own replacement, and suggested Nelson as his short-term fill-in on the DRB.

Dunstan, the chair of the DRB, interviewed Nelson for the post, as well as Carlson, a local architect.

Dunstan then forwarded their names to the mayor and Councilman Ron Peltier, the council liaison for the DRB, with the hope that they would be presented to the council in November for a short-term appointment.

While the city code does allow leaves of absence for members of its citizen advisory committees, with the mayor’s approval, citizen advisory committees generally cannot choose and appoint their own members, and the mayor cannot confirm someone’s appointment to an advisory committee.

City regulations require appointments to the DRB to be made by the mayor, with the confirmation of the city council.

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