While listening to City Council members listing off Jan Marx’s accomplishments during her many years in city government, new mayor Heidi Harmon says she has big shoes to fill but believes she’s ready to do it – even though the learning curve is pretty high.
“I’ve been spending a lot of time both with citizens and with staff, learning more about what the people here are really interested in and concerned about and then getting a lot of good information from city staff on how the specific departments work,” says Harmon.
One of Harmon’s first plans as mayor is to work on housing.
“Primarily the rental housing inspection program [because] I think there are a majority of people in the local governance that are really interested in looking at that and doing something completely different with that,” she explains.
Some life long residents of San Luis Obispo say Harmon’s win gives them faith that anyone can make a change in government.
“A lot of times people can think of government as very in-personal but if you see somebody like heidi run a grassroots campaign and get into office, it makes me realize that anyone can do this if they care enough about their community,” says SLO resident, Dillon James.
Harmon says it makes her proud to have had that impact on voters, telling us: “That to me is the highest compliment because so much of what I do is not at all about me or my political aspirations but to me I really win if someone else is inspired to get involved and get engaged.”
Harmon also hopes that members of the community will continue to speak up about ways the City Council can help. She plans on moving into her new office at City Hall on Monday.