So far, it’s been a trickle than a torrent of political adventurism down at Newport City Hall. Three city councilor openings, plus the mayor’s seat, and only three candidates just two weeks before the filing deadline.
Mayor Sandra Roumagoux made her intentions known early and filed for re-election. Councilor Mark Saelens, who was appointed to take Mayor Roumagoux old councilor seat, has filed for election in his own right. And Councilor David Allen, who came in last in a field of four for county commissioner last May, has filed for reelection to the council.
Allen has sent some thoughts about his candidacy out to the news media:
In looking back at the past several years on the city council, I think a lot has been accomplished during that time. Some of the things that come to mind include using recommendations from the Infrastructure Task Force to keep utility rates in check, an increased focus on planning for infrastructure both near-term and long-term, community outreach and engagement on a wide variety of issues, and a continuing commitment to the Visual Arts Center location in Nye Beach.
Also, and with nearly 10 years of experience as a coastal at-large representative at the state and regional level on ocean, natural resource, and other related issues, I look forward to continue to represent coastal interests on such things as further planning and mapping of our coastal waters so as to make more informed policy choices.
It’s fairly typical for would-be candidates to wait until the last minute to file to see who they might be up against. So even though there’s only two weeks to go before the filing deadline, that’s still a lot of sunrises and sunsets between now and then – an eternity for some who ponder whither politics.
Be that as it may, those who begin either their first term on the city council or if they’re getting another bite at the political apple, the climate of the council will be dramatically improved from the past five years. Still “new” City Manager Spencer Nebel has placed his strong hand on the helm of the city and the council has responded with both gratitude and relief at the changes his bringing. No more having to jump into what could only be described as city hall management by the council – some saying out of necessity. Councilors are now finding themselves doing what councilors more properly do – laying out goals and policies for the city while enjoying the good work of a managerial professional and his team as they to carry out those policies and goals.