Geneva City Council appoints District 5 councilman

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GENEVA, Ala. (WTVY) - The Geneva City Council has been short one member for about a month now, but they won't be anymore; they held a circumstantial vote to fill the District 5 seat.

Earlier this month, District 5 Councilman Bart Wilks was elected to the Geneva County Commission.

He decided to vacate his seat on the city council.

According to Alabama state law, Geneva is too small to hold a special election for the position.

Although he had some competition, the council voted to appoint Richard Bixby.

"That's what it's all about, giving back to your school, or to your city or to whatever,” said Richard Bixby. You live here long enough, you're a part of the community. It's time to put in your time."

Richard Bixby has been living in Geneva for 29 years.

He teaches history and coaches girls’ basketball at Geneva High School.

When he saw the city council seat open, he saw an opportunity.

"The image of Geneva. I really want to promote a positive image to bring in families to go to our school, to open a small business," said Bixby.

Due to a state ordinance, the council is granted the right to appoint the seat rather than hold a special election or wait until 2020 to fill the spot.

Bixby had some competition.

Former Councilman Greg Adams also ran for the position, bolstered by a petition from people in District 5 with 92 signatures saying they supported him.

Military veteran and Geneva native Tuwanna Marks was also interested.

"We live here,” said Marks. “We want to live in the best city in the world. The only way you can live in the best city in the world is if you contribute."

Although the council is already two years into their term, it's a blank page for Richard Bixby.

"I'm just super excited to get started,” said Bixby. “I've known most of the council since I've been here for 29 years, so I'm excited to work with them."

I asked Richard Bixby if the council seat was going to cause any issues with coaching the basketball team, and he said he gets to make the team's schedule, so it shouldn't be too much of a problem.

A similar issue is going on with the Hartford mayor position after Jeff Sorrells was elected to congress.

Its city council also met, but was unable to make a decision for mayor.

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