Bainbridge council picks Schneider as its newest council member

Leslie Schneider has been appointed to the Bainbridge Island City Council.

The council held a special meeting before the start of its regular council session Tuesday to pick a new council member for the Central Ward.

One of the Central Ward’s two seats on the seven-member council has been vacant since March, when Mike Scott announced he would step down to take an appointment as a judge in King County Superior Court.

Schneider was one of five finalists who were picked late last week for further consideration. The other candidates were Nathan Daum, Mark Jordan, Monica Aufrecht and Debbie Hollyer.

Four candidates faced more questions from the council in this week’s second round of interviews; Daum dropped out of council consideration after the finalists were picked.

Candidates were given approximately 10 minutes each to answer questions from the dais.

The council hopefuls were asked about balancing Bainbridge’s policies on development that may conflict with each other; how they would spend an unexpected $1 million budget windfall, if one ever arose; what would keep them up at night if they were a council member; if the city’s development moratorium should be extended; the proposal for a downtown parking garage; and at what point should process be set aside for progress.

After a question-and-answer session that lasted a little longer than 40 minutes, the council adjourned to a 10-minute-long, closed-door executive session to discuss the candidates’ qualifications in private.

The council then reconvened in council chambers to consider nominations and make their selection.

Council members filled out ballots with their top choices, and then named their top choices.

The finalist was announced after the council’s ballots were tallied. It took three votes to get a choice that collected a majority of first-choice ballots by the council.

Schneider will be sworn in at an upcoming council meeting in May.