Four candidates to be queried by Sequim council

By Jeremy Schwartz
Peninsula Daily News

SEQUIM — One of the original five City Council candidates to be interviewed Monday night for a vacant seat on the council is no longer in contention after finding out he does not live within the city limit.

Cliff Silliman said a city official told him Friday he doesn’t live in the city of Sequim when Silliman called to ask why he had not yet been sent a list of questions that all the other candidates had received.

“My street’s in the city limits. My next-door neighbor is in the city limits. I am not,” Silliman said Saturday.

Mayor Ken Hays confirmed that the list of candidates for appointment to the seat left vacant by Bill Huizinga’s resignation in July is now down to four.

They are:

■ Eileen Cummings, owner of EMC Realty Inc. in Sequim.

■ Ron Fairclough, who ran unsuccessfully for Councilwoman Laura Dubois’s seat in last year’s primary election. He once worked as a dental technician at the Sequim Laboratory of Dental Arts.

■ Dennis Smith of Sequim.

■ Genaveve Starr, a 43-year Sequim resident who worked as administrative assistant for Peninsula College for four years until she retired.

Interviews at 6 p.m.

The six Sequim City Council members will begin interviewing the candidates at 6 p.m. Monday in a public session at the Sequim Transit Center, 190 W. Cedar St., and may make a decision after recessing into a closed executive session at about 9 p.m., Hays said.

The special meeting will begin an hour earlier with Sequim City Manager Steve Burkett presenting a financing plan for the Sequim Police Department and City Hall.

While carrying no animosity toward the city for his ineligibility, Silliman said he is disappointed because he thought he had a good chance of getting appointed to the vacant City Council seat.

“I went from that to not even getting a chance,” said Silliman, who owns Father and Sons Lawn Service, run by his son.

Silliman said he has briefly discussed with his wife the possibility of seeking annexation into the city or moving, though even if he moved tomorrow, he would have to be a city resident for at least a year before being eligible.

Each candidate has been given a list of questions council members will ask so they can prepare their answers, Hays said.

Huizinga left his spot on the council vacant July 7 when he resigned after saying he had moved outside of the city limit.

All the candidates for the vacant position live in Sequim, which is a requirement of City Council members.

The financing plan Burkett will present concerns a $12 million to $14 million civic center, which will include a new City Hall, dual-use emergency communications center and City Council chambers, located at the corner of Sequim Avenue and Cedar Street.

Voters in August approved a one-tenth-of-1 percent sales tax increase on retail purchases within the city limit to fund the new police station, which is to be part of the center.

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Reporter Jeremy Schwartz can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5074, or at jschwartz@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: September 29. 2012 5:47PM
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