By Jessica Mathews/

The Howell City Council held its first virtual meeting Monday evening.

The main order of business was the search for a new city manager. The special meeting started off with an open session but then Council convened into closed session to discuss applicants. Those were reviewed and Council selected the candidates they would like to interview. The names are not being released. Interim City Manager Erv Suida tells WHMI they’re reaching out to five applicants to see if they’re interested in interviews, which would take place during a special meeting on April 15th. Suida said once candidates have accepted interviews and those are lined up, then he believes they’ll be able to release candidate names.

Suida says they’ll continue to comply with all of the executive orders out there and thus will be doing virtual candidate interviews at the virtual open meeting on April 15th, similar to what was done Monday evening. Suida says the entire special meeting will be conducted in open session via the Zoom webinar application. Information will be posted on the City’s website. It starts at 9am and will continue until all of the interviews are done and deliberations are conducted. Suida is anticipating about 1 ½ to two hours for each applicant and then a couple hours of deliberation afterward to hopefully come up with a selection.

Suida said Monday’s virtual meeting went smooth and they anticipate it will be a good way to either make a selection or narrow down the applicants. Meanwhile, Suida said he thinks the City is one of the first in the county to conduct a virtual meeting and members of the public were present. He said they received some comments that it was well done and everyone seemed to appreciate it who participated. Suida added it was a nice test run prior to the next regular council meeting set for April 6th at 7pm in the same manner.