“Let Seaside Keep Its Mayor,” read the lawn signs throughout the city. Voters heard the request, as Mayor Jay Barber on Tuesday defeated challenger John Chapman, owner and operator of KSWB Productions LLC/Radio Clatsop.
Barber, a former city councilor who filled the vacant seat of the late former Mayor Don Larson in 2016, has lived in Seaside for 11 years. The former president of Warner Pacific University and pastor of a community church in Red Bluff, California, Barber and his wife, Jan, have four grown children and five grandsons.
With all members of the City Council returning next year, Barber seeks continuity to pursue projects already underway, including a $15 million Seaside Civic and Convention Center remodel, urban renewal and providing city infrastructure to relocate schools outside the tsunami inundation zone.
“I really appreciate the faith the voters have expressed by voting for me,” Barber said after taking 60.1 percent of the vote to Chapman’s 37.8 percent. “I look forward to working with our council, which stays intact as well for the next four years. We live in a great city, and we’ve got a future ahead. I’m honored to be able to serve.”
City Councilors Steve Wright, Tita Montero and Dana Phillips each ran unopposed in Ward 1, Ward 2, and Ward 3 and 4.
Montero, a councilor since 2010, touted council accomplishments during the campaign, and cited the need for continued work on workforce housing, homelessness, city infrastructure, emergency preparedness and quality of life.
Phillips, elected in 2010, said she was proud of opportunities to assist residents when they have had issues and raised concerns, citing her advocacy for those seeking parking access for people with disabilities.
Wright moved from Gresham to Seaside in 2014. He worked 35 years for an international grain exporter, retiring as chief financial officer in 2013. Wright said he will continue to work with the mayor and other councilors to achieve the goals set by the council in early 2017.