In her six years on the Pismo Beach City Council, Shelly Higginbotham has done her homework, has been a strong voice for fiscal prudence and has emphasized decorum and respect.
“I want Pismo Beach to be in the headlines for accomplishing things — not having negative press because the council is not behaving,” she once said.
Well put; under Higginbotham’s leadership we believe the City Council will continue to build a reputation for greater professionalism that eluded some past councils.
Another plus: Higginbotham’s four years as mayor pro tem have provided her with valuable experience in chairing meetings and representing the city at official functions when the mayor could not be present.
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She’s also served on a number of commissions, such as the countywide Homeless Services Coordinating Council and South County Area Transit (SCAT) board, that have given her an impressive background in regional issues. She’s also been highly involved in the Lucia Mar school district, which her children attended, has served on the board of the San Luis Obispo Child Development Center and was a Pismo parks and recreation and beautification commissioner prior to joining the council.
We especially like her habit of keeping a close eye on city expenditures. For example, she voted against spending $80,000 to fund a new position to manage the city’s parking operations, because she thought it made sense to investigate whether the city could save money if it contracted out the work. She’s a strong supporter of pension reform; she believes the city must take a hard look at a two-tier system that provides new hires with less generous benefits.
Higginbotham’s only opponent, Rodger Gillespie, has an impressive resume that includes service in the Navy, public relations, writing and teaching. We believe he would have much to offer were he to apply for a position on a city advisory commission. However, we believe Higginbotham’s strong record of experience in city government makes her the stronger candidate for mayor. The Tribune strongly urges Pismo Beach voters to elect Shelly Higginbotham.
The Tribune’s endorsement
Race: Pismo Beach mayor
Term: Two years
Salary: $814 monthly stipend; $55 monthly cell phone allowance; $40 stipend for Internet; eligible for health benefits
Candidates: Substitute teacher/author Rodger Gillespie; City Councilwoman Shelly Higginbotham
The Tribune endorses: Shelly Higginbotham