Yelm’s City Council set to select Council Pos. 3. replacement
On Tuesday, May 26, Yelm’s city council will go into Executive Session to review Council Position 3 applicants for that recently vacated seat, a result of former councilor Cody Colt being appointed as Public Works Director. There is one+ year left on this term before the appointee would need to run for election.
While there is more than one applicant, history has the potential of repeating in Yelm with one of the candidates being a defeated council member, EJ Curry, who was rejected for re-election by the voters last November.
The dynamics of the pandemic requires the vision of a younger candidate, and not a past councilor who served as a “place holder.” While several on the council may feel selecting EJ Curry is to their benefit because of her past experience to handle the upcoming biennial budget planning, they should have longer vision to the future, in the public’s interest.
In Autumn 2016, then Interim Mayor JW Foster cast a tie-breaking vote to replace this same vacated Pos. 3 seat when Bob Isom resigned. Foster chose defeated councilor Jenn Littlefield. The voters defeated her again in 2017, choosing Cody Colt. Appointing a voter-defeated councilor back onto the council should not be repeated again!
The current councilors should revisit their stands from 2016 that could potentially be repeated next week, quoting the Yelm Community Blog, October 12, 2016:
– In what has now become the norm, the three progressive councilors (Carmody, Stillwell, DePinto) all won the 2015 election defeating long-time city hall incumbents on platforms of open government, transparency and following public process voted for candidate Scott Bradley, while “The Old Guard” councilors (Curry, Wood, Hendrickson) and interim mayor all voted for Littlefield:
* Councilor Carmody expressed her disappointment in describing what she termed was a “lack of foresight and respect for the citizens of Yelm.”
* Councilor Stillwell thanked all of the candidates for their willingness to serve, encouraging all to run on the Nov. 2017 ballot.
* Councilor Wood thanked the candidates and supported the choice of Littlefield, lessening the impact of Foster’s decision by saying she was only “just a seat-filler.” [for one year until the Nov. 2017 voters decide in that election]
* Councilor DePinto made an eloquent statement saying that many think that government knows best, rather than the people, except that should be the other way around. DePinto said people come first and voters had spoken in twice rejecting Littlefield with their ballots. He beseeched the council they should be listening to the people, saying “we are here to serve to people and not our own interests.” Clearly, he, too disapproved of Foster’s selection.
* Interim Mayor Foster said, “My vote is for the best interests of the City of Yelm. Jen Littlefield has experience on the council and can hit the ground running as we take-up several important issues [the city’s budget] in the next 3 months. I made the best decision at the time for the citizens of Yelm.”