Her family is moving to Grand Forks.

    Kari Miller is resigning from the Crookston School Board because her family is moving to Grand Forks this summer.

    “After commuting to work for 34 years, I figured it is my turn to do the driving, since I work on a part-time basis,” she tells the times in an email.

    Miller many years ago opened, owned and operated Crookston Eye Clinic. She has since sold the clinic but continues to work there part-time. Her husband, Mark, has worked for Brady Martz in Grand Forks for several years.

    “We are sad to leave the Crookston community as it has been a special place for me to work and for us to raise our family,” Miller said in her email. “We so appreciate the many wonderful people that make Crookston what it is. …It is a difficult decision, but seems to make sense for our family.”

    The school board at its Monday, May 13 special meeting is poised to accept Miller’s resignation, which is effective June 7. Superintendent Jeremy Olson tells the Times that he and the board will begin to discuss the process of finding someone to complete Miller’s term at their May 27 meeting.

    Miller’s term is set to expire at the end of 2020.

    If it were a few years ago, Olson said the board would simply appoint someone to finish Miller’s term. But a change in the statute made a few years ago requires a special election to be held if the term has more than one year remaining, which Miller’s does.

    A special election would take place in November 2019. Olson said statute also dictates that the board needs to appoint someone on an interim basis to fill the seat until the special election. Olson said the presumption would be that the person appointed would also be interested in running in the special election, but that wouldn’t be a requirement. “And you might have the person who is appointed end up being different than the person the voters elect,” the superintendent noted.

    There is an effort in the Minnesota Legislature this spring to return the statute relating to situations like this to the way it was a few years ago, giving school boards the ability to simply go through an appointment process to fill a departed member’s term. But Olson said from what he’s been able to gather, the movement in St. Paul “doesn’t have political legs” for passage this spring.

    Miller was originally appointed to the board when board member Phil Greer resigned to take a job in New Mexico. Once she completed that term, Miller ran for a full term in the 2016 election. Of the incumbents and challengers who ran in 2016, Miller received the most votes of all of them.

    “I will miss serving on the school board; that has been a very rewarding experience,” she said. “I believe the Crookston School District is positioned well for exciting things to come in the future.”