Mayor Vini Samuel said she’s running for a second term to build upon the major projects and events started during her first term.
“We have an amazing team in place now,” Samuel said, “from the city council to the department heads to the city staff out there working every day. And I think we’re just hitting our stride in terms of fixing the roads, building sidewalks and forming partnerships with local businesses and non-profits.”
Samuel said she’s filed paperwork with the Public Disclosure Commission to start a re-election campaign. The official deadline to file for office comes later in the year.
She served on the city council for eight years, including time as mayor pro tem, and has lived in Montesano and worked as an attorney in the Harbor since 1997. Her office is one block from city hall.
Samuel is a former columnist for The Daily World, elder board member at the Church of God and founding sponsor of the Fall Festival at Lake Sylvia. She and her husband have a son who attends Montesano High School.
“There’s something special and magical about this town and its people,” Samuel said. “It’s been a privilege to serve as mayor and help make this place even better.”
In her first term, Samuel secured more than $8 million in local, state and federal grants for major construction projects, including a revamped entrance to downtown, the reconstruction of Main Street and other roads, major work at the city wastewater treatment plant, bathrooms at Fleet Park and new soccer fields near Beacon.
Events started during the first term include the Saturday Morning Markets at Fleet Park, the Fish & Brew Fest, Jingle Lights and an economic development forum for local business owners.
“All of these things only happened because of partnerships,” Samuel said. “It took a team—city council members, department heads and myself, all working together on these projects to make them happen. It’s not easy to get millions of dollars in grants. But nothing worth doing is easy, and this city is worth it.”
If she wins a second term, Samuel said she’ll focus on things that will last: new construction projects and new partnerships.
“We need a long-term plan for fixing and replacing streets and sidewalks,” Samuel said. “The eastern and western entrances to town need a facelift to match the beautiful new main entrance. And there’s more work to do, in partnership with local businesses and non-profits, to expand opportunity here, so our kids have the chance to live and work in Montesano.”
Samuel’s campaign can be reached at [email protected].