Supervisor-elect Mike McGuire said he will resign from the Healdsburg City Council next week to save the city money and give voters a say in choosing his replacement.
But it will be his council colleagues who will decide whether to put his seat on the November ballot or appoint a replacement.
"It's pure speculation at this point," as to what the council will do, Councilman Eric Ziedrich said Tuesday.
McGuire was elected June 8 to the county board of supervisors to represent the fourth district, an expansive area encompassing most of northern Sonoma County, and will take his county office in January.
After McGuire submits his resignation, council members intend to decide at the same meeting Tuesday whether to appoint someone to fill out the remainder of his four-year term, which expires at the end of 2012, or let voters make the choice.
"We agreed the discussion should take place after Mike vacates the seat," Mayor Jim Wood said Tuesday.
In explaining his decision, McGuire said: "I want to do what is best for Healdsburg, and I believe the people should make the decision on who they want representing their needs on the council."
By stepping down now, McGuire said he hopes the city will avoid the estimated $15,000 to $30,000 cost for a special election to choose his successor.
If his seat is put on the ballot in November in conjunction with the general election, the cost would be around $1,500.
The council has a limited time to make a decision if it wants to put McGuire's seat on the November ballot.