The Tacoma City Council will take another two weeks to decide who will temporarily fill in for Councilman Robert Thoms while he’s deployed to Afghanistan.
After naming nine finalists last week out of a pool of 26 applicants, the council interviewed each of the finalists at its study session on Tuesday. The council was expected to make a motion to appoint someone at its Tuesday evening meeting, but after the group spent about 30 minutes in executive session, Mayor Victoria Woodards said the council would take more time to deliberate.
“We want a little bit more time to deliberate and make the best choice for District 2,” Woodards said, adding that Thoms will be in the country until the end of the month, though he’ll be in military training.
Thoms, a commander in the U.S. Navy Reserves, announced last month that he’d been involuntarily recalled to active duty and will be spending six months in Kabul working in Navy public affairs.
Woodards also noted the quick turnaround from when they started soliciting applications for the temporary gig on Feb. 15 to the date of finalist interviews 2-1/2 weeks later. Still, if council members make a decision on March 20, the entire process will have taken over a month. Woodards said the council would have taken up the vote on March 13, but there is no council meeting that day.
Here are the nine finalists:
▪ Bradd Busick
▪ Justin Camarata
▪ AJ Gordon
▪ Russ Heaton
▪ Ann Locsin
▪ Janey Mattson
▪ Sarah Rumbaugh
▪ Ronald Stephens
▪ Dan Voelpel