July’s monthly Manzanita City Council meeting marks the end of an 11-year tenure for Councilwoman Leila Salmon, who is stepping down and creating an immediate vacancy on the council in her wake.
Having recently turned 88 years old, Salmon is stepping down after nearly finishing her second term, which was scheduled to complete in 2018.
“I wanted to give the citizens of Manzanita, and myself as well, a gift of stepping down,” said Salmon. “The council is going to be addressing some very important things in the future and I would rather someone more capable of dealing with these challenges replace me.”
Originally from the Portland area spanning back to the 1950s, Salmon moved across the nation to Massachusetts and then New York with her husband, eventually finding herself back in Oregon, right in Manzanita.
Salmon cites a number of reasons she’s choosing to step down but she assures none of them are in regards to any false rumors about her wellbeing.
“I’m fine as far as my health is concerned,” said Salmon. “I think when people subscribe to the rumor mill sometimes falsities stick whether they’re true or not.”
Salmon also suggests that topics like The Village at Manzanita proposed development, the entire process behind the physical relocation of the Manzanita City Hall, workforce housing and the possibility of a secondary planned development proposal on the horizon, she feels the council is going to be under some unique pressures and it’ll take a dedicated mind in order to see the community through while still maintaining integrity.
“It was always my intention to endeavor to keep Manzanita’s small village feel,” said Salmon. “The council is going to need people who have that same mindset especially in the time to come.”
According to City Manager Jerry Taylor the process for this transition will be by the books and as straight forward as possible. The City first announces the vacancy then there is a 30-day period to allow any applicants time to submit their applications, from that point the selected candidates will be asked to attend a City Council meeting for an interview, the council votes on who they want and that selectee will then sit in on the rest of the City Council meeting as they are sworn in that very night.
“We’re following the City’s charter regarding city council vacancies,” said Taylor. “It’s not something that happens all the time but often enough for there to be established protocols to go by.”
Currently the Manzanita City Council is accepting applications for appointment to the Council opening created by Salmon’s resignation. Whoever is appointed to the position will serve the remainder of Salmon’s term, which expires Dec. 31, 2018.
Anyone wishing to apply has to be a registered voter who has resided in the city for at least one year prior to appointment. Applications will be received by the City Manager/Recorder until 5 p.m. on July 31. Application forms are available at the office of the City Manager/Recorder during normal business hours.
Manzanita isn’t the only city to see unexpected council resignations. Garibaldi has lost two members of their city council very recently with long-time active community member Eugene Tish stepping down as he had recently sold the Garibaldi House Inn and had decided to move on to other pursuits. In addition to Tish, one of the last election’s new faces on the council decided to leave after choosing to start his own comic book retail store in Tillamook. Monty Elliot opened Oregon Coast Comics located at the south end of Tillamook near the old Roby’s Furniture location and has resigned his position. Garibaldi residents wishing to apply for either seat may send a letter of interest to City Manager John O’Leary before July 12.