Miami Commissioner Francis Suarez has to resign seat, but when?

Commissioner Francis Suarez speaks to the media outside his offices at Miami City Hall on June 13, 2013.
Commissioner Francis Suarez speaks to the media outside his offices at Miami City Hall on June 13, 2013.

Miami Commissioner Francis Suarez, who is challenging Mayor Tomás Regalado in the November election, will have to resign his commission seat sometime before the election — but he hasn’t decided yet on an effective date.

If the effective date is by Sept. 5, then the commission could appoint him to the seat for the remainder of the time before the election and there would be an election Nov. 5 to fill the Group 4 seat for the remaining two years of his term.

But if he were to decide that his resignation didn’t take effect until Nov. 13, the date the results in the mayor’s race are certified, the commission would not have to schedule an election for the Group 4 seat on Nov. 5. It could schedule a special election later or appoint someone to fill the seat until November 2014.

It could even appoint Suarez if he lost the mayor’s race.

Suarez said he is leaning toward making his resignation effective early and may ask commissioners on Thursday — the last regularly scheduled meeting for a month — to schedule a special meeting on Sept. 5.

At that time, the commission would be able to schedule a Group 4 election for Nov. 5.

So far, there are five announced candidates for District 4 — Ralph Rosado, Denis Rod, Andres “Andy” Vallina, Manuel “Manolo” Reyes, and Miguel Inda-Romero.

Mayor Regalado reacted with disbelief to Suarez’s indecision.

He said that when he ran for mayor in 2009, he resigned his commission seat early and the remaining commissioners appointed him to fill the seat until the election.

In November, he was elected mayor, and Suarez was elected to his old Group 4 seat.

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