(V. I. Consortium) ST. THOMAS — Governor Kenneth Mapp late Tuesday signed a proclamation calling for a special election to fill the vacancy in the 32nd Legislature of the Virgin Islands, after an opinion from District Court Judge Curtis Gomez left the matter squarely in the governor’s corner. The special election will see constituents in the St. Thomas-St. John district going to the polls within the next 60 days and no later than April 9, 2017, to select a new senator to complete its group of 7. The announcement follows a Virgin Islands Supreme Court decision to bar Kevin Rodriquez, who had won a seat in the 32nd Legislature, from being seated.
Virgin Islands law requires that the governor of the Virgin Islands call for a special election within thirty days of a vacancy.
“Today, as well, the District Court of the Virgin Islands acknowledged that the Revised Organic Act and Virgin Islands Law contemplated a remedy for vacancies in the Legislature and acknowledged that Governor Mapp is within his authority to call a Special Election to fill the vacancy,” reads a press release Government House issued late Tuesday following Judge Gomez’s opinion.
“Due consideration must be given to the rights and privileges of the citizens of the Virgin Islands of the United States to be afforded full and equal representation in the Legislature of the Virgin Islands,” Mr. Mapp said.