Newly appointed Hollister City Councilwoman Carol Lenoir said “right off the bat” that growth management will be a major concern for her.
Lenoir said it during her interview Monday before the four council members who chose her over two other applicants. Hollister City Council members voted 3-1 to appoint the retired city employee and current planning commissioner to replace Councilman Ray Friend, who resigned from the role in August.
The two other applicants were Elizabeth Doidge and Dawn Koistinen, and the council chose an appointment process over holding a special election in March since Friend resigned too late to get the race on the November ballot.
Mayor Ignacio Velazquez had the dissenting vote. Velazquez had motioned for Koistinen, but nobody seconded his motion. That came after council members asked each candidate the same seven questions.
“Right off the bat, I think growth management is, and will continue to be, a big concern to the community,” Lenoir said. “I think there’s answers to that.”
Lenoir lauded the city’s rating scale for development allocations and said she had been part of devising it.
“It was a good process,” she told members. “I’m really glad to see the council’s headed in that direction.”
Lenoir said she supports such projects as beautifying the west-side gateway to the city, infill projects and multi-family housing. As a downtown resident, she also wants to focus on that area.
“I like to see downtown neat and clean,” said Lenoir, a planning commissioner the past six years.
Aside from the planning commission and working for the city, she noted how she was involved in oversight of the two sales tax measures approved by voters in recent years.
As for other goals, she mentioned the senior and younger generations as a priority.
“I also would like to support anything youth and seniors,” she said. “I know I’m 61 but I think like a young person.”
Council members followed the Lenoir interview with the other two .
Elizabeth Doidge underscored her organizational experience with the local American Legion, and Dawn Koistinen talked about working 30-plus years in the financial industry.
Koistinen stressed how she’s not a politician and told council members the city needs more job opportunities. She also touched on a sensitive topic for several officials.
“And I think we need to have a motorcycle rally,” Koistinen said, referring to the event supported by the mayor but not others on the council, “events that will bring people into our town to spend money here.”
She also supported affordable housing and the Measure G tax to widen Highway 25.
Doidge pointed to the need to fix traffic issues surrounding local schools, expanding Highway 25, bringing more businesses downtown, affordable housing and more activities for youths.