By CLARK MASON
THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Windsor’s new mayor, Steve Allen, said the town’s relatively good financial situation may have been part of the reason none of the incumbents were challenged in last month’s election.
“One of the things I’m pleased with, obviously, is where we stand financially,” he said Thursday. “We have done fairly well. That says a lot about the council in these times. We don’t seem to be suffering like those around us.”
“I think it really helped,” he explained. “How do you run against a record like that?”
While Windsor has resorted to some cutbacks in its budget, it still has “decent” reserves, Allen said.
For the first time in Windsor’s nearly two decades of existence as a municipality, no one stepped forward to run against the incumbents in the November election.
As a result, Allen, as well as council members Sam Salmon and Robin Goble, were re-elected to new four-year terms without having to campaign.
That brought a bit of humor to Wednesday night’s swearing-in prior to the council meeting.
“It was a race well run,” Allen said.
“No hard feelings,” quipped Goble.
Allen, who has been a councilman for 12 years and served as mayor before, was then chosen by his colleagues to serve as mayor for the coming year. Debora Fudge was selected vice mayor, basically to stand in when he’s not available.
The job of mayor, which is in part ceremonial, entails running the council meetings and helping to choose the agenda.
“It’s a bigger time commitment to be the mayor,” Allen said. “You need to be showing up as somewhat more of an ambassador to the city.”
Besides ribbon-cuttings for new businesses, speaking to service clubs and interest groups, he said it also involves making the rounds to existing businesses to get their feedback, or encourage them to stay in Windsor.
The mayor is paid the same as his colleagues – approximately $400 per month for their two council meetings and other activities. Council members also receive medical benefits while in office.
Allen, 55, has worked for the City of Santa Rosa for almost 20 years. He is a supervising engineer in the asset management division of the utilities department.