Mukilteo looks to fill seat on council

MUKILTEO — With City Councilwoman Jennifer Gregerson having been elected mayor, it means there will be an open spot on the council.

Anyone interested has until noon Friday to apply. As of late Wednesday, only one person had done so — Scott Casselman, who has run for the city council before.

Gregerson, 35, in November defeated Mayor Joe Marine in his bid for a third term in office. The final tally was 3,444 votes to 2,923, roughly 54 to 46 percent.

Gregerson is midway through her third term on the council, leaving the vacancy. The term runs through the end of 2015.

The city council is scheduled to meet at 6 p.m. Dec. 30 to interview candidates and select a new member.

With the appointment to Gregerson’s position, it means there will be three new faces on the city council in 2014, barring a return by a past elected official.

Councilman Richard Emery, who lost to challenger Bob Champion in an upset, said others had suggested to him that he apply for Gregerson’s vacancy. He considered the idea but decided against it, he said.

“I thought if I were to apply, it might seem the process wouldn’t have been so open and transparent,” Emery said. “There are many ways to be of service to the city and I expect to find another role. And there’s another election in two years.”

Emery joined the council in 2008. He serves on the board of directors for the Japanese Gulch Group, which has advocated preserving the wooded ravine for recreation. He said he might take on a role with Forterra, a Seattle consulting firm that has worked with the city on obtaining grants to purchase property.

Champion defeated Emery, 2,929 to 2,743, roughly 51 to 48 percent of the vote. Champion is a scientist in the aerospace business segment of Honeywell International in Redmond.

Ted Wheeler defeated Terry Preshaw by 24 votes for the position left open when Councilman Kevin Stoltz chose not to run for re-election. The count was 2,914 to 2,890. Two years ago, Preshaw lost by 19 votes to Emily Vanderwielen.

Wheeler is chairman of the city’s Parks and Arts Commission. He owns two construction businesses in Arlington and a rental company in Mukilteo.

Councilman Randy Lord was the only incumbent official to win re-election, easily defeating challenger Fred Taylor, 4,039 to 1,709, or 70 to 30 percent.

The other council members, who were not up for re-election this year, are Linda Grafer, Steve Schmalz and Vanderwielen.

All the new office-holders, Gregerson included, are scheduled to be sworn in at 7 p.m. Jan. 6 at City Hall, 11930 Cyrus Way.

Bill Sheets: 425-339-3439; bsheets@heraldnet.com.

Applications for the vacancy on the Mukilteo City Council are due by noon Friday. To apply, visit the city’s homepage at www.ci.mukilteo.wa.us/ and scroll down to “Mukilteo Seeking Applicants for City Council Vacancy.” Click on “read more” for an online application and instructions. For more information write executive assistant Nancy Passovoy at n.passovoy@ci.mukilteo.wa.us or call 425-263-8018.

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