Cole Seeks Powerful Seats Outside City Hall
Friday, December 16, 2016
Aired 12/19/16 on KPBS Midday Edition.
Myrtle Cole, council president, City of San Diego
Newly elected San Diego City Council President Myrtle Cole released her list of appointments to council committees and outside organizations Friday, giving herself powerful seats on two intergovernmental organizations.
Cole nominated herself to chair the Committee on Rules, which hears matters on elections, council rules and the city charter. It is the only committee seat she is seeking.
She did, however, nominate herself for seats on the board of directors and executive committee of the San Diego Association of Governments. SANDAG is a powerful countywide agency responsible for planning and funding transportation projects. Cole is also seeking to keep her seat on the board of directors of the Metropolitan Transit System, which operates public transit, and for a promotion to the agency's executive committee.
San Diego City Council Committee Appointments
San Diego City Council President Myrtle Cole lists her appointments to city council committees.
The City Council will vote on confirming the nominations in a special session Monday afternoon. If the list is confirmed, Mayor Kevin Faulconer would retain his seat on the SANDAG board despite rarely attending its meetings.
Cole, who is a Democrat, won the council presidency on Monday in a 6-3 vote, with one other Democrat and the council's four Republicans supporting her. City Councilman David Alvarez had the support of several progressives, who saw him as more independent from the mayor's office.
Mark Kersey, a Republican, would take over the position of council president pro tem. The position would give him the authority to run council meetings when Cole is absent. It was previously held by Marti Emerald, a Democrat who did not seek re-election to the council.
Kersey would also keep his chairmanship of the Infrastructure Committee, while Alvarez would keep the top seat of the Environment Committee. All the other committees would get new chairs:
• Audit, newly elected Georgette Gomez;
• Budget, newly elected Barbara Bry;
• Economic Development, Lorie Zapf;
• Public Safety and Livable Neighborhoods, Chris Cate;
• Smart Growth and Land Use, Scott Sherman.
Recently elected Councilman Chris Ward was not nominated for any chairmanship posts.
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