Four Talent residents run for three council positions

TALENT — Four candidates, including two incumbents, have taken out paperwork to run for three city council seats that will be filled in November's election.

Sherman Lamb will seek re-election to Position 2, a post he was appointed to in March. E J McManus will seek re-election to Position 6, a spot he won in the 2006 election.

Planning Commission Chairwoman Teresa Cooke and Budget Committee member Greg Phillips plan to file for Position 4, a seat recently vacated by Wendy Siporen. Both indicated they would seek appointment to Siporen's seat for the remainder of the term that ends Dec. 31.

"I'm pleased with the direction that things are going and I just want to follow through on it," said Lamb. He previously served as chairman of the Planning Commission, a board he'd been on since 2006.

Lamb works for a winery in Eagle Point and previously grew grapes on Pioneer Road.

"Getting the budget balanced so that we don't have to rely on surcharges would be an improvement," said Lamb. "I don't know quite know how to go about that, but I want to look at it."

McManus was appointed to the council in 2005. He said projects that have involved the City Council and employees in community activities, such as the Harvest Festival and the newly launched Friday concert series, have helped create a more vibrant city.

"One of the big things is obviously budget constraints," said McManus. "We have to make sure we just don't rely on adding fees for things."

McManus is a housing development director for Pacific Retirement Services, where he works on affordable housing issues for seniors. He would like to see Talent offer affordable housing in the future. He served on the city's economic development committee before his council appointment.

"There are different issues that I think will be refreshing to talk about," said Cooke, who has been on the Planning Commission since 2003 and is serving her second term as chairwoman. "I've been doing service since 2003 and I just felt that it's time to take the next step."

A recently enacted $4 monthly surcharge on water bills to finance public safety was inevitable, said Cooke. She also endorsed the council's action, requested by a resident, to sunset the surcharge in 2010 and review it then.

While growth is inevitable, Cooke said, she wants to see it done in an orderly fashion and with ample public comment. Cooke, nutritional services coordinator at Ashland Community Hospital, has lived in Talent since 2002.

Attempts to reach Phillips for comment were unsuccessful.

Dan Goyette, co-owner of the Downtowne Coffee house, had said earlier he plans to run for the council. Goyette was critical of the monthly surcharge and said the city needs to adjust to its current revenues. He was out of town and unavailable for comment.

Application packets for the races and the vacant seat can be obtained at City Hall. Deadline for filing applications for the November election is Aug. 22. The council is scheduled to fill the vacant seat on Aug. 20.

Tony Boom is a freelance writer living in Ashland. Reach him at

Share This Story