San Luis Obispo City Councilwoman Kathy Smith will not seek re-election this November. Smith, who has served on the council since 2010, will end her term Dec. 1.
“My vacated seat paves the way for younger minds and new approaches to grapple with an increasingly intense and heavy workload,” said Smith in a written statement. “Coupled with the need to ensure that the elected council governs the city, the immediate horizon calls for fine-tuned judgments of massive development projects.”
Two other council members will also be up for re-election in November: Mayor Jan Marx and Councilwoman Carlyn Christianson, who was sworn in in July to complete the remaining term of Andrew Carter, who resigned to take a job in Guadalupe.
Two large projects that will come before the City Council are the San Luis Ranch, a large residential and commercial project planned for the Dalidio Ranch, and the Chevron project, a large commercial and open space project at the southern edge of the city.
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Smith said that the council seat has been a full-time job including overseeing two difficult budgets, the passage of Measures A and B that changed how pay and benefits for San Luis Obispo employees are decided, and weighing in on several large development proposals including Garden Street Terraces and Marsh Street Commons.
Smith, who also served on the council for three years in the mid-1990s, said she would put her support behind a candidate who embraced a “resident-oriented approach.”
“San Luis Obispo is a special place, named the happiest city because of citizen empowerment,” said Smith. “I serve to facilitate that empowerment.”