In 2014 I was elected to City Council from of a field of four candidates and received 597 votes; I was humbled by this show of confidence in my abilities and have worked hard to represent those who voted for me, along with the entire community.
One of the commitments I made prior to that election was to encourage community participation in, and understanding of, our local government. I work towards this in several ways:
• Lunch with a Council Member, a partnership with Friends of Homer Public Library, provides a monthly, informal setting to chat with council members.
• I presented an FOL at Homer High School where I explained opportunities for students to serve on commissions and how to offer written or in-person input to the council.
• I am available to anyone that wants to talk to me and have assisted numerous community members in navigating requests to be a visitor on the agenda, how and when to make public comment, and how to participate in commission meetings.
I am diligent in following the Open Meetings Act and make sure that my communications are transparent and honest. This is relevant to some of the complaints made by those encouraging recall. When I reached out to Donna Aderhold, after Mayor Zak declined to add my Sanctuary City resolution to the agenda, she told me that she was already working on an inclusion resolution with David Lewis. That meant there were already three council members in the conversation, so I was unable to reach out to Shelly Erickson, which was my original intention.
I seek out comprehensive information and multiple viewpoints on issues before the Council, for example:
• When working on the beach policy I spoke to coal gatherers, biologists, beach-front residents, and many other stakeholders.
• When considering harbor fees I toured commercial fishing vessels, met with charter operators and poured over documents provided by private boat users and the Commission.
The list continues with Budget town halls, public safety building/HERC, commercial cannabis — in every instance I welcome input and suggestions, taking all into consideration during council discussions and, ultimately, when I vote.
My votes, including for Resolution 16-121 and Resolution 17-019, are made with the knowledge that my vote represents the perspective of many in our community. As an elected official, I am obliged to represent my constituents’ viewpoints as well as at liberty to state my own. Who will serve in a very time-consuming volunteer role if they may face recall for voicing an opinion that others disagree with?
I cherish living in this town, and in this country, and do not take my privileges and responsibilities lightly. There is a wide range of stances among the members of our community and we are best served when that range is represented amongst our elected officials.
There is an election in October; that is the appropriate time to decide whether I should retain my seat. I urge you to vote no to this recall effort.
Catriona Reynolds was elected to the Homer City Council in October 2014.