LAFAYETTE -- In a small conference room tucked away on the second floor of Lafayette's city offices, incumbents Don Tatzin and Brandt Andersson were appointed Wednesday morning to another four-year term on Lafayette's City Council.
The special council meeting to decide whether or not to hold an election in November was called after the deadline to file for City Council elections came and went without any challengers to Tatzin and Andersson emerging.
In the case of an uncontested election, without any local tax measures on the ballot, cities can decide to forego the election process altogether. City Manager Steven Falk estimated that by eliminating the November election the city would save between $25,000 and $50,000.
Before the vote, Councilmember Traci Reilly expressed some concern that foregoing an election would close out the possibility of write-in candidates, including those who may have started the process to run before the deadline.
"I would be a little bit more inclined to want to allow write-ins if somebody had pulled papers and tried to start the process and then got mired down in some of the details" than to encourage hopefuls to start the proces now, Reilly said.
City Clerk Joanne Robbins said one challenger had contacted her to express interest in running, but that person never took out the necessary paperwork.
After a few minutes of discussion, the vote passed 3-0 with each of the two incumbents recusing themselves.
"Congratulations to each of the two of you, we have passed the resolution," said Councilmember Mike Anderson after the vote.
Reilly noted that in an online forum, some Lafayette residents supported the idea of just appointing Andersson and Tatzin.
" 'Pass the resolution, save the money and put it toward parks.' Reilly said, quoting a comment she read online.
"So, people are already spending the money we saved," she said to laughs from the other members.
Jennifer Baires covers Orinda, Lafayette and Moraga. Contact her at 925-943-8378. Follower her at twitter.com/jenniferbaires.