The new iteration of the Santa Barbara City Council will appoint a new member come January when Councilmember Cathy Murillo (pictured), who was elected mayor in November, vacates her Westside District 3 seat a year before her term ends. On 12/5 the current council officially opened the application process for “eligible candidates,” meaning those who live within the district’s boundaries. Applications must be received by 1/16, and interviews will be held on 1/23.
The appointment will be made on 1/30. Jacqueline Inda, a member of the city’s District Elections Committee, argued a special election should be held so the Westside’s minority residents could participate in choosing their representative. She threatened litigation otherwise and said she’d secured the legal services of former judge Frank Ochoa. Murillo agreed with Inda and was the lone councilmember to vote against the appointment process.