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No action taken on vacant Petaluma Planning Commission post

  • (PD FILE, 2013)

Petaluma City Council members were unable to reach a majority vote on any of three applicants for a seat on the Planning Commission on Monday, so the search will be reopened.

With one member absent, the council deadlocked 3-3 on a ballot that included three candidates vying for one open seat on the planning board.

Three Planning Commission applicants – Daryl Johnson, Houston Porter and David Powers – applied for a four-year opening created when newly appointed commissioner JT Wick took Sonoma County's top planning job last month.

All three also applied in June, when the council chose four other commissioners, including Wick. At that time, Johnson received two votes, from Mayor David Glass and Councilwoman Teresa Barrett. Barrett was the sole vote for Powers, while Porter received none.

On the first ballot Monday, Porter received three votes, from council members Mike Healy, Gabe Kearney and Kathy Miller.

Glass voted for Johnson, as did Chris Albertson. Powers received one vote, from Barrett.

On a second round of voting, Barrett joined Glass and Albertson to vote for Johnson, while Healy, Kearney and Miller voted for Porter again.

Councilman Mike Harris, a potential tie-breaker, was absent from Monday's meeting.

With a tie, and no apparent will to change votes from any council member present, the item was tabled.

The application process will be reopened for additional applicants. A new selection process will be held in January.

Johnson, 54, is a construction and design adviser for the Petaluma Health Center and worked on the Theatre District project in 2006.

Porter, 43, has lived off and on in Petaluma for 20 years and manages his family's rental properties. He has served on several local nonprofit boards and is pursuing a career in law.

Powers, 69, is a retired small-business owner and professional photographer who has lived in Petaluma for three years.

The city will accept new applications through December. For more information, visit www.cityofpetaluma.net, call 778-4360 or stop by the city clerk's office at City Hall, 11 English St.

You can reach Staff Writer Lori A. Carter at 762-7297 or lori.carter@pressdemocrat.com.

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