Longtime Stow Councilman Jim Costello is taking over as interim mayor.

The City Council agreed Thursday to appoint him to the city’s top job, effective May 14, when Mayor Sara Kline leaves for her new job as head of the parks and recreation department in Cuyahoga Falls.

“I’m looking forward to the opportunity and the challenges that come with it,” said Costello, 70, who has served on the council for 15 years.

He has no intention of seeking the mayoral post on a permanent basis.

Residents will vote in November for a new mayor to complete the last year of Kline’s four-year term. There also will be an election next year for mayor for a full term.

After the Summit County Board of Elections certifies the results in November, Costello will return to his position as a Ward 2 councilman.

In the meantime, the council also plans to appoint an interim council member to fill in for Costello.

Costello, who is retired and previously worked as a purchasing manager for Struktol Co. of America, said he has no grand plans for his six-month stint in the mayor’s office. He described himself as the least political person on the council.

“I want to see that we have a smooth transition from Sara to me and then provide a smooth transition to whoever the next mayor will be,” he said.

Costello added that he plans to retire from government service when his council term ends next year. He also faces a term limit on the council.

“Enough is enough,” he said. “I’m looking forward to a full retirement and being able to sit around and quote, unquote do nothing.”

Councilman John Pribonic has announced plans to run for mayor this fall.

The elections board said Friday that no one has filed petitions yet for the position. Stow elections are nonpartisan.

Rick Armon can be reached at 330-996-3569 or rarmon@thebeaconjournal.com. Follow him on Twitter at @armonrickABJ.