Parking Issue Likely to be Tabled
COLUMBIA - For new Columbia city council member Fred Schmidt, his first council meeting couldn't have fallen on a more hectic day.
"I'm an accountant," Schmidt said with a smile, "and today's tax day."
But Schmidt said juggling the duties of a full-time accountant and a part-time First Ward representative is only the beginning of the challenge beginning at Monday night's meeting, the first for him and new Fifth Ward representative Helen Anthony.
"In the beginning, it's all hard. It'll be learning the logistical rules and getting to know the personalities," Schmidt said.
While some council observers say the election of Schmidt and Anthony — who both favor a more measured approach to development — marks a shift in council dynamics, Schmidt said he doesn't focus on individual politics, but individual personalities.
"I think it's going to be a nice mix on the council, and the way I look at the world is 'How do our different personalities fit together?'," Schmidt said. "We may have different political views, but the question is, "How do we work together?'"
Schmidt and Anthony will take their seats on a night where two high-profile issues will likely be set aside for further work and discussion: a hike in downtown parking meter rates and a sewer rate measure will both likely be tabled.