There will be at least one new council member on the dais at the final Santa Monica City Council meeting of 2014 following today’s election.
Fourteen candidates are seeking to fill three seats on the Santa Monica City Council today.
Two are incumbents – Pam O’Connor and Kevin McKeown – while one seats remains completely open with the retirement of councilman Bob Holbrook.
There is an interesting mix of candidates vying for votes today.
Apart from the two incumbents, there are three Santa Monica Planning Commissioners on the ballot (Sue Himmelrich, Richard McKinnon, and Jennifer Kennedy), a Parks & Recreation Commissioner (Phil Brock), two former City officials (Frank Gruber – a Planning Commissioner from 1995-99 and Michael Feinstein – a former Santa Monica councilman/mayor from 1996 to 2004), political newcomers (Zoe Muntaner, Whitney Bain Scott, and Nick Boles), and multiple election campaigners (Jerry Rubin who has run five times since 2000, Jon Mann who has run 12 times since 1992, and Terence Later who has run three times since 2006).
One thing is for certain: the dais will look dramatically different than it did prior to the 2012 election. Not only would at least three new faces be on the council within that two-year time frame, but Santa Monica will also have a new City Manager for the first time since January 2010 with Rod Gould retiring at the end of January 2015.
Accordingly, some of the most familiar faces on the dais during the past five to 10 years will no longer sit on the dais.
In 2012, Richard Bloom retired from the Santa Monica City Council after 13 years of service, moving on to serve the City and surrounding communities in Sacramento as a member of the State Assembly.
Also in 2012, Bobby Shriver ended his council service at eight years. Less than two years later, Shriver threw his hat in the ring in the race to replace Zev Yaroslavsky on the County Board of Supervisors and will face off against Sheila Kuehl for that seat today.
For all the latest election updates, visit smvote.org.