Mississauga City councillors will decide who fills the vacant seat in Ward 1. But it comes with catch. The successful applicant can’t run for the position come election time.

With municipal elections coming up later this year, council chose the selection process rather than a byelection because of costs involved of opening the polls with another so close at hand. The last Mississauga byelection, in 2015, carried a $330,000 price tag. The council vacancy was created due to the recent death of Jim Tovey.

The process Mississauga has decided on will be one where interested parties will have to apply and must meet a number of criteria, one of which includes agreeing not to be a candidate in the upcoming municipal election. The stipulation was put into place so the person selected wouldn’t enjoy the advantage of being an incumbent if they decided to run for the seat in the fall.

To qualify for the selection process, candidates must submit the required forms, meet all legal obligations and file by Feb. 9. Then, on Feb. 21, a special council meeting will be held where the qualified candidates will be asked to publicly present their case on why they should be chosen. Under the guidelines, priority consideration will be given to those who have an understanding of Ward 1 issues. After the presentations, the rest of council will then vote to pick the new councillor.

Complete guidelines are available through mississauga.ca/portal/cityhall/officeofthecityclerk  as of Jan. 29.