2018 was a year of grappling with growing pains
Incumbents fall in Mountain View, as Mayor Lenny Siegel and Councilwoman Pat Showalter are voted off the council and Ellen Kamei, Lucas Ramirez and Alison Hicks assume the three open seats.
Kamei, Ramirez and Hicks beat incumbents after monthlong wait for final results
In a repudiation of the current city council’s direction, Mountain View residents last week voted out incumbent Mayor Lenny Siegel and fellow Councilwoman Pat Showalter, while electing three newcomers to the council.
As of Monday, Ellen Kamei, Lucas Ramirez and Alison Hicks were the top vote-getters, respectively, for the three open spots on the seven-seat council, with Showalter and Siegel finishing behind them.
With all precincts reporting, the candidates who won council seats were challengers Ellen Kamei, who led everyone with 19.20 percent of the vote, followed by Alison Hicks with 17.7 percent and Lucas Ramirez with 17.67 percent. Pat Showalter came in fourth with 17.23 percent, followed by Siegel with 15.59 percent and former Councilman John Inks with 12.54 percent.
In a shake-up, a trio of challengers appear to have edged out the incumbents in the Mountain View City Council race. As of the vote tally Wednesday morning, Ellen Kamei, Alison Hicks and Lucas Ramirez emerged as the top vote recipients for three seats, with Councilwoman Pat Showalter close behind.
Three seats on the City Council, currently held by Mayor Lenny Siegel and council members Pat Showalter and Ken Rosenberg, are on this November's ballot. Siegel and Showalter are both running for re-election while Rosenberg decided against seeking a second term.
The candidates challenging them are former two-term council member John Inks, planning commissioners Ellen Kamei and Lucas Ramirez, and retired city planner Alison Hicks.
With the Mountain View City Council on track to make land use decisions that will affect the pace and the amount of development in the city for years to come, the candidates vying to represent residents all consider housing a top priority.
Ellen Kamei is a six-year planning commissioner and district director for state Assemblyman Marc Berman. She said wants to serve on council to encourage housing and work on transportation programs that would get people out of their cars. Kamei received early endorsements from the police and fire unions, who both promised her endorsements after she lost her last City Council campaign.
Kamei said she wants to increase variety of the city’s housing stock by building micro-units and creating a subsidized down payment program for middle-income residents wishing to buy homes for the first time.
Los Altos Town Crier Meet the Candidates
Echoing a theme of her campaign, Kamei touted building more housing priced for the "missing middle," those earning too much to qualify for affordable housing but not enough to buy a home. A recent Bay Area housing assessment reported that Mountain View had built zero homes fitting this income category, she said.
With two days until Friday’s filing deadline for the Nov. 6 election, local ballot measures and council races are shaping up to be competitive – and controversial.
Fellow Planning Commissioner Ellen Kamei is not far behind, reporting about $13,000 in fundraising, including donations from Councilwoman Lisa Matichak ($130), Planning Commissioner Robert Cox ($100) and South Bay Assemblyman Evan Low ($500).
In Mountain View, incumbents Lenny Siegel and Pat Showalter are running for re-election while Ken Rosenberg is not. So far, planning commissioners Lucas Ramirez and Ellen Kamei have said they are running. Former Mayor John Inks and slow-growth advocate Alison Hicks are also running.
Daily Post July 12, 2018
Council hopeful wins early endorsements.
Kamei, 34, is a third-generation Mountain View resident and has served on the Leadership Mountain View Advisory Council, Mountain View Public Safety Foundation and the Mountain View Historical Association. She filed candidate papers on May 24.