The new mayor said she had a positive outlook for the future and
thanked her friends and family for all their support. While recognizing
she cannot dictate the agenda, Dixon said she will promote volunteerism
in the community.
Dixon will serve a one-year term as mayor, which is mostly a
ceremonial position. Her duties include running the council meetings and
representing the city. Council members expressed confidence in Dixon,
saying they look forward to her leadership.
In a surprising move, Councilman Gary Monahan was voted mayor pro tem
and will step in if Dixon becomes busy or is unable to represent the
city. Dixon has announced she will seek reelection to another four-year
council stint when her first term ends in November 2002.
Monahan is also up for reelection, but has announced he will not run
again. Councilman Chris Steel questioned Monahan's nomination because of
what Steel said was a seeming lack of interest in the political arena
"I was going to nominate [Councilwoman Karen Robinson], but if Gary
wants to take that . . . I just thought he was burnt out," Steel said.
"I would be honored," Monahan responded quickly.
Many City Hall regulars also expected to see Robinson fill the
secondary position, but Monahan received a unanimous vote.
With the new positions filled, it was time for Cowan to step down. She
said she enjoyed her year as mayor but was glad someone else had the
opportunity to hold the position.
"I'm ready to step aside and have someone else run the meetings,"
The council had an incredibly productive year, Cowan said. She said
not all city business was on her individual agenda, but many issues were
discussed for the good of the city.
"The mayor doesn't set the agenda. Every council member has the chance
to bring an issue forward. We had a lot of major issues and made some
good progress," Cowan said.
Cowan's colleagues thanked her for her hard work over the past year.
"I know we don't always agree," Steel said. "But you know how to play
the game and you did well and we did well to have you."
* Lolita Harper covers Costa Mesa. She may be reached at (949)
574-4275 or by e-mail at o7 firstname.lastname@example.org .