"Vancil in, Eremic considers council bidCouncilman Merrill Robison won't bid for the office of mayor. "
June 9, 2008 · Updated 3:50 PM
"Bainbridge Planning Commissioner Deborah Vancil has decided to run for the north-end City Council seat that Liz Murray is vacating. And north-end businessman John Eremic, who ran a write-in campaign against Norm Wooldridge two years ago, says he's strongly considering running for the same seat.Still another suspected council vacancy was confirmed last week when central ward councilman Merrill Robison said he will not seek a second term.I'm getting too old for this, said Robison, who also said he had no interest in running for mayor to succeed Dwight Sutton.No candidate has yet declared for Robison's council seat.Vancil and husband Dick own Mastercraft Lighting, which assembles high-end lighting fixtures at its Day Road Industrial Park location.I'm ready to move up from the Planning Commission to the City Council, said Vancil, who has been on the commission for eight years.Describing herself as very familiar with the comprehensive plan, Vancil said the plan is fine, but the implementation has not been consistent. She pointed to the high-density development occurring in Winslow as an issue of public concern, and said that it might be necessary to re-think the plan to concentrate density in the downtown area.We are desperately trying to hold onto important values - a sense of neighborliness and community, she said.Eremic, a septic system designer and installer, ran as a registered write-in against the incumbent Wooldridge in 1999. While he pulled only 14 percent of the vote, he proclaimed himself satisfied with that showing against a high-profile incumbent. His principal campaign issue was preserving farmland and open space.I won't make up my mind finally for two or three weeks, Eremic said, but I'm talking to people about a possible campaign organization.In declaring that he will not seek re-election, Robison said he hopes to encourage numerous candidates to come forward.Jim Llewellyn, who also represents the central ward, said earlier this week that he would probably seek re-election.Bainbridge voters will elect a new mayor and fill three council seats in November's election.Two of the council seats up for election are from the central ward - basically from Eagle Harbor north to Koura Road, including all of the Battle Point peninsula. The other seat at issue is from the north ward. Council candidates must live in the ward they seek to represent, which means that there will be no council candidates from the island's south end this year. If there are more than two candidates for any seat, the field will be winnowed in a primary election, in which voters will vote only for candidates running in their ward. In the general election, all city voters will vote on all seats.I hope we have 20 people sign up to run for council and mayor, Robison said. This community deserves the best leadership, and I hope we don't have anybody elected (unopposed) without a vote. "