VACAVILLE — Only one person has thrown his hat in the mayoral ring after Steve Hardy announced his decision to not seek re-election.
City Councilman Ron Rowlett pulled candidate papers Monday, indicating his plans to run.
“I’ve always anticipated I’ve wanted to run for mayor,” he said. “Now (is) a good opportunity for me to step up and be a leader.”
His experience includes his tenure on the council and his profession as a business agent for the local carpenter’s union, which, he said, puts him in touch with the business community.
“I’ve served in some of the tough(er) times Vacaville has (had),” Rowlett said. “I’ve had to solve issues that were alarming. That I can really draw off.”
Rowlett, whose council term is up in 2016, said as he moves through his sixth year on the council, he’s always put a priority on public safety. He’s also put a premium on the business community and enticing future business to the Vacaville fold. He said he wants to continue the wave of success the city has had in bringing in new businesses such as Icon Aircraft.
“I think we’ve done a great job, but we need to continue that,” he said.
Economically, he said, the city is “coming around” and “getting stronger.” He said that remaining fiscally responsible and staying out of crisis mode is paramount to future stability.
He acknowledged that the city was still deficit spending and still dealing with a continued structural deficit. He said the city needs to ensure it’s not spending more until “we stop deficit spending.”
Rowlett said it’s important to “remember what we saw in the past and not trip over that in the future.”
Hardy announced in June his plans to not seek re-election, attributing his decision to his health and need to focus on getting healthy.
“I love this job so much,” he said in an previous interview. “(But) I really have to put myself first. It’s just time for me to do that.”
City Clerk Michelle Thornburgh on Thursday said that only two others have pulled papers for council seats indicating a possible election run. They are newcomer Cara Fox and incumbent Mitch Mashburn.
Along with the open mayor’s seat, two council seats are also up for grabs as Mashburn and Curtis Hunt near the end of their terms. Hunt indicated previously his desire to run – but whether it’s for mayor or a repeat council seat is up in the air.
“We’re still debating, we’re still deciding,” Hunt said.
Attempts to reach Councilwoman Dilenna Harris to see if she plans on a run for mayor were unsuccessful. Harris’ term is up in 2016. She challenged Hardy for the mayor’s seat four years ago and lost.
Reach Susan Winlow at 427-6955 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/swinlowdr.