Put a limit on interim

May 3, 2013 

Interim is defined as the period of time between one event and another. But what does that mean? One week, one month, one year or something longer?

Alderwoman Melinda Hult wanted the vagueness defined this week when Mayor Mark Eckert appointed controversial political figure Thom Peters interim city attorney. Eckert said his term would be short, but that's not precise, either.

We agree with Hult that an end date should be set on an interim appointment. That would be appropriate for any government job.

Setting a definite time would be fair to the appointee; he would know more precisely what he's signing on for and could plan his work accordingly. And it would keep the process honest and on track. An appointee might be acceptable for a month or two but maybe not six months or more.

It's not too late to clear up the question. Eckert should set a deadline to have a permanent city attorney on the job.

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