In June, Chula Vista voters approved Proposition B, which allows the city council to appoint an applicant to a seat that “will sit vacant for more than 13 months but fewer than 25 months.”
When Mary Salas was elected mayor in November her council seat opened up and several people have applied to fill her seat.
On December 29, the last day to apply for the position, there were 44 applicants. The way the selection process works is that now Mayor Salas and councilmembers Patricia Aguilar, Pamela Bensoussan and John McCann review the applicants’ résumés and put forward their recommendations.
Any applicant who receives at least two council recommendations will be interviewed on January 8 at 4 p.m. According to the city website, “When interviews have ended, the City Council will deliberate in public until an applicant receives at least three confirming votes.”
The applicants are: Richard Andujo, Javier Angulo, Kari Genevieve Braun, James Clark, Craig Collins, Rob Corcilius, Lorna Dennison, David Diaz, Bryan Felber, William Field, Mario Fragomeno, Jill Galvez, Hector Gastelum, Todd Glanz, Thomas Glover, Bernard Gonzales, Ofelia Gutierrez, William Hall, Willie Harris, Shirley Horton, Willard Howard, Roger Hyde, Michael Jackson, Mark Liuag, Kirin Macapugay, Scott Melligan, Steven Miesen, Lisa Moctezuma, Patricia Morris, Kevin O'Neill, Benito Orozco, Jason Paguio, Michael Palomo, Devin Price, Jesseca Saenz-Gonzalez, Jose Serrato, Mike Spethman, Felicia Starr, Sandy Stonesifer, Daniel Vaccaro, Linda Wagner, Cheryl White, Majid Max Zaker, and John Zarem.
Humberto Peraza, who serves as a trustee on the Southwestern College board, said on December 30, “It’s a good sign for Chula Vista that so many people have applied. This is an exciting time for the city because of the Bayfront and University developments; people want to be a part of creating that future.”
If the council fails to appoint anyone by January 23 then the seat will go to a special election. A rumor is circulating that perhaps some councilmembers would prefer to see this go to an election.
Peraza said he’s heard that rumor, but offered this statement: “Let’s hope that politics don’t leave the community paying $500,000 for a special election. It would be sad if out of 44 people, many of them who are clearly qualified, the council could not agree on one.”