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Smith takes Gearhart council race

Voters also approve pot taxes
By R.J. Marx

The Daily Astorian

Published on November 6, 2018 12:01AM

Last changed on November 7, 2018 9:06AM

Gearhart City Councilor Kerry Smith speaks at an election forum.

Colin Murphey/The Daily Astorian

Gearhart City Councilor Kerry Smith speaks at an election forum.

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GEARHART — City Councilor Kerry Smith won re-election on Tuesday night to Position 1, defeating challenger Jack Zimmerman.

“I would like to thank the voters of Gearhart for giving me the opportunity to represent them again,” Smith said after winning 69.4 percent of the vote to Zimmerman’s 29.3 percent. “I appreciate their faith in my work and what I have accomplished in the last four years. … As we move forward, I renew my commitment to listening to my constituents and directing Gearhart in a positive direction.”

Smith is an independent contractor and has lived in Gearhart for 33 years. He started his own business 26 years ago and primarily has done home remodels in Gearhart and Seaside. He has served as a city councilor since 2014.

Smith has called a new fire station the city’s most important concern. The existing fire station, built in 1958 and liable to collapse and flood during a Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake and tsunami, is the topic of years of conversation.

City Councilor Paulina Cockrum, who was unopposed, won re-election to Position 3.

Cockrum, a Gearhart resident since 1976, served on the Planning Commission before her appointment to the council in 2015. Her goal is to “practice stewardship and work to make Gearhart a better place when I leave than when I started.”

Pot taxes

Gearhart voters approved a 3 percent tax on marijuana sales.

Gearhart was among a few cities to vote in a tax prior to the legalization of recreational cannabis. In 2014, shortly before state voters approved Measure 91, the city passed an ordinance requiring a 10 percent tax on the sale of recreational marijuana and a 5 percent tax for a medical marijuana registry cardholder.

The city sought to reduce the tax to keep it line with other cities on the North Coast.

County voters on Tuesday also approved a 3 percent tax on marijuana sales.

View the latest results here.


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