Trinidad resident Richard Clompus was sworn in, following a unanimous vote, as the new Trinidad City Council member at the July 14 Webex meeting.
An eye doctor and nature photographer who has been attending council meetings regularly since he moved to Trinidad to be close to his grandchildren, he was appointed to the seat vacated by the resignation of Dwight Miller, whose term ran through December 2022.
Clompus said in his acceptance of the appointment that he is focused on Trinidad’s prosperity, working collaboratively with the Native American community and supporting the importance of regular government to government discussions with tribal councils, promoting tourism (taking into consideration coronavirus limitations), and in “making Trinidad a better place.”
He emphasized his communications background in assisting with updating the city’s web site and in seeking state or federal grants for Trinidad infrastructure projects.
Dwight Miller was praised by Mayor Steve Ladwig and the other council members for his 10 years of service on the council, which included a term as mayor from 2016-2017.
Miller has served with all of the City Managers starting with the late Steve Albright, Karen Suiker, Dan Berman and current Manager Eli Naffah and has been active in finance, fiscal responsibility, water conservation, support for technology advancements, collaboration with the California Coastal National Monument-BLM partners and has been a cheerful and accessible neighbor and friend to all Trinidad residents.
City Clerk Gabriel Adams reminded the 27 callers who tuned into the Webex virtual meeting that three City Council seats will be open on the Nov. 3 ballot; two seats for a four-year term and one seat for a two year term (this is the seat filled by Councilmember Dave Grover when Councilmember Jim Baker resigned from his seat shortly after his election in 2018).
Trinidad residents who are interested in running for office need to acquire 10 registered voter City resident signatures. Find out more at the City Clerk’s office in Town Hall or email [email protected].
In other City business, City Manager Naffah announced that application had been made for COVID-19 related assistance to the city through the CARES Act. The minimum amount expected is $50,000.
Naffah said that a half-time sheriff deputy (shared with the City of Blue Lake) is available to assist Deputy Jager. The Council voted unanimously to pursue this public safety enhancement.
Katrin Homan on the phone suggested that the CARES Act funds might be available to pay for the half-time deputy. Naffah also reported that Sprint had removed all of its communications equipment from Trinidad Head and that a Coastal Development Permit was in progress for the removal of Verizon and AT&T pads and poles.
A cultural monitor would be present during the removal. He also announced that the Humboldt Bay Power Station’s energy will be utilized in the event of Public Safety Power Shutoffs during the fire season so that Trinidad’s power outages might be less impactful.
Some of the phone-in audience who participated in the City meeting besides Mayor Steve Ladwig and Councilmembers Jack West, Miller, Tom Davies and Dave Grover, new Councilmember Richard Clompus, Clerk Gabriel Adams, City Planner Trever Parker and City Manager Eli Naffah were Shirley Laos, Jacque Hostler-Carmesin, Bryce Kenny, Richard Harris, Katrin Homan, Cheryl Kelly and Ken Miller.
Water and drought planning, the Van Wycke trail erosion work, reviving Government to Government meetings between the City and Tribal Councils, the continuation of the 3/4 cent sales tax on the November ballot, Covid-15 signs and policies were discussed at the meeting.
This columnist looks forward to the day when in-person meetings might take place at Town Hall again.
The city is doing its best to accommodate participation in the Webex meetings, but nothing replaces face to face communication and understanding.
Email Patti at [email protected].