Skip to main content

Boreal Community Media

Grand Marais seeks interim Council member; former Councilor Anton Moody reflects on past service

Feb 15, 2024 12:42PM ● By Content Editor
Photo: City of Grand Marais

By Laura Durenberger-Grunow - Boreal Community Media - February 15, 2024

The City of Grand Marais is seeking an individual to fill the vacant seat on the City Council left by Aaron Carlson. The appointed member will serve until December 31, 2024, with the opportunity to run for a full term (Jan 1 2025 - Dec 31 2026) in the November 2024 election. 

Former Council member Anton Moody shared his insights and experience serving on the Council for eight years with Boreal Community Media. "The best part about being on the Council was how much I learned about the process of local government. Unlike the state or federal level, city politics are really the things that effect us daily. It's a very slow turning ship," he explains. 

Along with the great reward of learning about the intricacies of municipal government , Moody acknowledged working with the diverse perspectives within the community. "It’s easy to be critical and inflammatory on social media, but I found when we’d have policy discussions as a Council, we would take the time to learn the facts, have good conversation, and then vote."

He shared that even though members of the Council came from different backgrounds and opinions varied greatly, talking through each person's point of views and reviewing all the facts often resulted in unanimous votes. "It was a great thing, and something missing in the bigger picture," he said. "I know enough to know that you can’t please everybody. I’m sure there are people in town that did not like some of the things I voted for. But ultimately, I used the information I was given and made what I thought was the best decision with that information."

The average time commitment per month can vary, but for Moody, he averages he spent about 4-10 hours per month attending meetings and responding to inquiries. As for past experience, he acknowledges he had none. "I was elected when I was 35 years old and had no prior government experience, but had the opportunity to attend a training." He would go on to serve for eight years. "I actually miss being on the council," Moody confesses. His highlights include "eliminating nightly rentals from existing in the R-1 zone, the new maintenance facility project, the Hwy 61 project, and the work with the zoning ordinance to try and encourage better use of the land and resources within the city limits to spur development of housing for residents."

Mayor Tracy Benson told Boreal Community Media that anyone interested in applying for the vacant seat would need to fill out an application. (For a paper form, see PDF link below.) Instead of a general election, applicants interested in filling the seat will be voted on by Council. "For this appointment it is a Council vote only.  In case of a tie, the Mayor makes the appointment," Benson said. 

According to 
the application, interested persons need to meet all of these following:
  • Must be a qualified city voter,
  • At least 21 years of age on the date of taking office,
  • A U.S. citizen, and resident of the city for at least 30 days
  • Not been convicted of a felony under either state or federal law unless the individual’s civil rights have been restored.

To learn more about Grand Marais City Council, visit the website here. 

Boreal Ship Spotter - larger view here