Re-election campaign starts early

The official election season hasn’t even opened yet, but the City Council’s three incumbents already face one challenger on the November ballot.

Mayor Barbara Pierce, Vice Mayor Rosanne Foust and Councilmember Ian Bain are all up for re-election this year. So far, all three have given some indication that they will seek another term. Kevin Bondonno, chair of the Housing and Human Concerns Committee, has also tossed his hat into the ring.

“One topic of concern [to voters] is how we’ll grow and where we will grow. The last time, it was Marina Shores,” said Pierce, who has formed a campaign committee and will be making an announcement about her intentions this week. She was first elected in 1999, and this is her first term as mayor.

After the 2004 referendum that killed the high-rise residential Marina Shores Village project, many predicted the ouster of incumbents in the 2005 City Council race. Despite those predictions and challenges from Hilary Paulson and Adrian Brandt, all four incumbents — Alicia Aguirre, Jeff Ira, Diane Howard and Jim Hartnett — held on to their seats.

“I think people have heard that we are going to try to do things differently,” Pierce added, saying the city has made strides in terms of getting the public involved and hearing their input on public projects.

Bondonno, who has servedon the housing committee for six years, has lived in Redwood City for more than 20 years.

“We have to figure out the right mix of housing for the entire city, and specifically for downtown,” Bondonno said, adding that he wants to make sure the city doesn’t lose sight of improvements in neighborhoods across the city.

Foust, who has been on the council since 2003, serves on its water and finance subcommittees.

“I got a lot done in my first term, but I want to finish some other things,” Foust said, such as seeing the restoration of Bair Island through, guiding downtown’s growth and guiding connections between Redwood City and Redwood Shores, where Foust lives.

Bain was appointed to a partial City Council term in 1998, then was elected to his first full term in 2003. He brings a focus on disaster and neighborhood preparedness to the mix.

“I think the thing we need to do differently is better community outreach, particularly on big projects,” Bain said. “I think we’ve all taken lessons away from Marina Shores.”

The election is Nov. 6.

bwinegarner@examiner.com


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