The Tehachapi City Council elected Phil Smith Mayor for a two year term effective at its Dec. 17 meeting. Smith has served on City Council continuously since his election in 1986 and as Mayor for three times before, 1990-92, 1994-96 and 2000-02, a total of six years.
A Tehachapi resident for more than 47 years, Smith served as Mayor Pro-Tem for the previous two years. His current term on council expires in November 2014.
Susan Wiggins was elected Mayor Pro-Tempore. She was elected to council in 201.Susan has lived in Tehachapi for almost ten years with her husband Ed, a member of one of Tehachapi's pioneer families. She previously served on the Tehachapi Valley Recreation and Park District board where she worked with the city to provide more recreational opportunities.
Ed Grimes and Kim Nixon, were sworn in as members of the council. Kim Nixon was appointed to the Council on September 6, 2011 and elected to serve a four year term in the recent election. Her term will expire in 2016.
Ed Grimes. the outgoing Mayor, was elected to serve another four year term through 2016. He has lived in the Tehachapi area for about 53 years. Grimes thanked the community for its support during his time as Mayor. Grimes said, "I'm thankful to have had the opportunity to participate in so many events. There were times when I was very tired but it has been a good ride I really appreciate the community for re-electing me to the city council for another four year.s As you all know I love Tehachapi. I was raised here and I will do everything I can to make Tehachapi a better place to live. Thank you very much."
Laura Jenkins was sworn in as the new Tehachapi City Treasure replacing Pat Gassaway who did not run for re-election. Julie Drimakis, who was elected as City Clerk, was absent from the meeting, will be sworn in at city hall. Drimakis replaces Denise Jones who did not run for re-election but will remain as a city employee.
Following the swearing in ceremonies and seating of the new officials each of the individuals stepping down were presented with plaques recognizing them for their service to the city.
Craig Mifflin Manager of Environmental and Public Affairs for Leigh Southwest Cement presented the city with a check for $20,000 toward the building of Freedom Plaza.
Mifflin said, "It is really a pleasure for me to be here. At last city council Chris Kirk and others presented a plan for the Freedom Plaza. When we first started talking to the city about what we could do to become more involved and participate in a project they talked about this.and we got all excited. It's a wonderful idea. We are proud to be a part of this and hope to be able to contribute more in the future."
Mayor Smith said, "I just have to say we really appreciate the partnership with Lehigh Cement and this will go a long way to our goal of seeing that plaza for our veterans."
In other actions the council approved a finding of public convenience and/or necessity of a type 20, beer and wine, license for the Family Dollar Store to conduct off-site sale of alcoholic beverages The council also approved a new staff position for economic development and community outreach.