Editor, Ceres Courier,
We are approaching the March 5 deadline to fill the vacancy for the District 1 Ceres City Council seat. I hope that all of us, regardless of who you want the City Council to choose for the position, would support our city council paying for the special election out of the city council operating budget. The city council operating budget funds a monthly stipend of $500 per councilmember and $100,000 annually that pays for premium health coverage for our councilmembers. Currently, there is over $19,000 in savings because Mayor Lopez and I chose to not receive the city’s premium health coverage. At our last city council meeting I made the motion that the city uses these savings and our stipends to fund the special election but only received an aye vote from Mayor Lopez and the motion failed.
While the disagreement over who is best for the residents of District 1 has been a healthy debate – and all sides have made compelling points about who should be appointed – democracy demands this discussion and Ceres is fortunate to have residents who want to make a positive difference for our city. If a candidate cannot be agreed upon at Thursday night’s meeting, we, as a city council, should be leaders and fund the special election out of our own city council operating budget to not impact the general fund with additional costs.
I encourage everyone that is interested to participate and make your voice heard.
Couper S. Condit,
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