New city councils in SLO County take shape

A pair of new councilwomen were sworn in Tuesday as the new city councils in San Luis Obispo County are taking shape.

In Paso Robles, Maria Garcia was sworn in as a council member, making her just the third woman ever to serve on the Paso Robles council and the first in more than three decades. Garcia was sworn in alongside Mayor Steve Martin and Councilman John Hamon, both of whom were reelected in November.

Likewise in San Luis Obispo, one newcomer and two incumbents were sworn in. New Councilwoman Erica Stewart was sworn in alongside reelected Mayor Heidi Harmon and reelected Councilwoman Carlyn Christianson.

Last month’s elections results are now official, following the SLO County Clerk-Recorder’s Office certifying them on Friday. 

The most contentious race in the county ended with Arroyo Grande Councilwoman Caren Ray unseating Mayor Jim Hill. Ray defeated Hill by nearly 6 percent, 52.95 percent to 47.05 percent.

Two newcomers, Jimmy Paulding and Keith Storton, will join Ray on the Arroyo Grande council. 

The closest mayor’s race took place in Morro Bay, where Councilman John Headding defeated businessman John Weiss 51.66 percent to 48.34 percent. Newcomers Dawn Addis and Jeff Heller will join Headding on the Morro Bay council.