OLYMPIA — Three City Council members were sworn in Tuesday night and the council will hold a special meeting tonight to appoint another new member.
Stephen Buxbaum took the oath of office as mayor and Nathaniel Jones and Steven Langer were sworn in as council members. Only Jones is new to the council. Langer had served as an appointed member from May 2010 until last month and Buxbaum had served as a council member since January 2010.
Buxbaum named Councilwoman Jeannine Roe to serve as interim mayor pro tem until the council holds its retreat and decides who will hold the position.
Buxbaum’s switch to mayor created a vacancy on the seven-member council, and state law allows the council to appoint a replacement.
The council plans to begin interviewing six candidates tonight. It is scheduled to begin by determining questions at 6:30 p.m. in Room 207 of City Hall, then move to Council Chambers at 7 p.m. for interviews.
The candidates are Julie Hankins, Dennis Hoppe, Karen Messmer, Dick Pust, James Staples and Christopher Ward.
City communications manager Cathie Butler proposed a process that would have a panel interview tonight, then an opportunity for deliberations and to possibly appoint a person tonight, which the council generally agreed with.
The council also agreed to examine voting records for the candidates to fill the position through the November 2013 general election. Here’s a look at the candidates, based on their applications:
• Hankins serves as the president of the Indian Creek Neighborhood Association in southeast Olympia.
• Hoppe is a small-business owner specializing in federal government service and supplies.
• Messmer is a former councilwoman who served from 2006 to 2009.
• Pust is a former longtime KGY radio host who was defeated by Stephen Buxbaum in the recent mayoral race.
• Staples is the former owner of Five Corners Bookstore, a downtown Olympia business from 1992 to 2007.
• Ward is a board member on the South Capitol Neighborhood Association.
Matt Batcheldor: 360-704-6869 firstname.lastname@example.org