Two members announced at the close of Monday night's council meeting they will be leaving public office this year.
Michael Wiggins tendered his resignation effective Sept. 6, and Valerie Knol said she will not seek re-election this fall.
Both cited changes in their personal lives as they explained their decisions. Wiggins said an opportunity to teach criminal justice at Ferris State University prompted him to consider leaving office. He was first elected to a four-year term in 2005 and picked up another four-term term in 2009.
"Beginning in August, I will be teaching a Monday evening class," he said. "I tried to make the two opportunities meld, and they did not."
Wiggins, who holds a master's degree in criminal justice from Michigan State University, will be an adjunct instructor. He'll teach several classes in the field, and said because universities are now working more with community colleges, he anticipates other opportunities to teach with Ferris.
"I spoke with everyone (on council) individually," he said, "and I made the decision to jump in with both feet."
Knol, who is in her second four-year term, said her decision not to run was difficult "because I deeply care about Farmington and its future." She said her boss, State Rep. John Walsh, was appointed House speaker pro tem, which has increased her responsibilities.
"I have a wonderful baby daughter I love spending time with, and my husband travels out of state for work," she added. "Due to the time constraints I have in my life, I will not be seeking re-election this fall."
Knol said she wanted to announce now, so that others would be encouraged to step up.
"This has been an incredible opportunity," she said. "I hope I can inspire others to be involved."
"This is an opportunity for others who want to volunteer and take on a role on council," Wiggins said. "I would encourage others to do that."
City Manager Vince Pastue said with two new council members seated this year, "You already start thinking about how you go through orientation." However, he said, six years ago, three new council members were elected, and the city put together a new program to get them up to speed.
Officials have 60 days from Wiggins' last day to appoint someone to fill out the last two years of his term—even though this is an election year.
"The charter's pretty specific," Pastue said. "There's an appointment for the reminder of his term."