By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Phipps to be replaced by appointment
Placeholder Image
Supporters of both Mike Kline and Steve Breckenridge lobbied for their man to be appointed to the Ceres City Council Monday evening in the wake of Rob Phipps' death. But Mayor Anthony Cannella said he will look to see what other names may be out there before the council makes an appointment.

Both men ran for City Council on Nov. 6 but fell short. Kline missed a seat when he attained 1,197 votes just behind Phipps' 1,348 votes. Breckenridge placed fourth with 870 votes.

Irv Gilgert suggested that the council should appoint Kline, noting "I don't feel it's right to appoint someone who didn't run." Gilgert called Kline a "very well respected" businessman and family man.

Gilgert's sentiments were echoed by Ceres resident Don Donaldson.

Leonard Shepherd plugged for Breckenridge's appointment, noting his faithful attendance at council meetings "for decades." Shepherd called Breckenridge a "concerned citizen" who would protect private property and Constitutional rights of citizens.

Mayor Cannella drew on past practice to announce that the council will make an appointment in lieu of spending $30,000 on a special election by going through applications of interested persons. He noted that while the council appointed Guillermo Ochoa - the next highest vote-getter in December 2005 - it first called for applications and conducted interviews. In the end, Ochoa was the one selected.

Cannella recalled that Ochoa's prior candidacy was not the sole reason for his appointment.

"We need to make sure we can work together," Cannella said of the appointee.

Cannella said neither Kline nor Breckenridge were owed an appointment, saying "neither party won" on Nov. 6.

He said he plans to give copies of the council's vision and goals to applicants to see if they can agree in principle.

Applications for the council seat are available at City Hall, 2720 Second Street, or on the city's website, The deadline for returning them will be 5 p.m. on Dec. 20. Interviews will be conducted by Cannella and Vice Mayor Chris Vierra on Jan. 2. Those interviewed will also be asked to attend a special City Council meeting scheduled for 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 3 in the Ceres City Council Chambers so they may address council. The mayor's recommendation and subsequent vote of the Council will occur at the meeting.