As one of its first official acts, the newly seated Paso Robles City Council managed to snub the outgoing mayor and the voters of Paso Robles in one fell swoop by appointing the last-place finisher in the recent election to fill a vacancy.
Now that’s getting off to a good start!
We have nothing against newly appointed Councilman Steve Gregory, but Picanco was the logical choice for the open seat on the City Council. He has plenty of experience and the desire to serve. But here’s what matters most: Picanco had substantially more support from voters, having lost out on a council seat by finishing just 14 votes behind Jim Reed. Yet amajority on the new City Council chose Planning Commissioner Gregory, who finished 232 votes behind Reed.
Perhaps the council majority thought it was time for a change; we don’t really know, because beyond a few predictable statements about Gregory’s qualifications, no one shared his reasons for backing Gregory over Picanco.
But if the council really wanted new blood, why not appoint Pam Avila, who came in fourth, trailing Picanco by a mere six votes? She, too, had considerably more voter support than Gregory; she’s well qualified; and she’d bring some much-needed diversity to the male-dominated council, which has not had a female member in 26 years.
This isn’t about Gregory — he should make a fine city councilman and we wish him well — rather, it’s about the manner in which he was selected. In choosing the last-place finisher, the council majority put personal preference ahead of the wishes of Paso Robles voters.
For that, each of the three council members who voted for this appointment — Reed, John Hamon and Fred Strong — earns a tarnished, tin-eared brickbat plastered with “I don’t care how you voted” stickers.
Best of luck to local football teams
We toss well-played bouquets and wish the best of luck to the Nipomo High and Paso Robles High football teams, along with their coaches, fans and families. Both teams have made it to the championship round in their leagues — a huge accomplishment requiring years of hard work and dedication on the part of these young athletes.
The Paso Robles Bearcats face Newbury Park in the CIF-Southern Section Northern Division championship game tonight — Paso’s first shot at the title since 2000.
The Nipomo Titans play in their first-ever final in the team’s 11-year history on Saturday, when they take on the Arrowhead Christian Eagles from Redlands in the CIF-Southern Section Northwest Division final.
Both games are at home, and both start at 7:30 p.m.