As of Tuesday, July 19, 2016
DALLAS — Michael Holland was appointed by the Dallas City Council Monday night to fill the vacancy left by councilor Murray Stewart’s resignation.
Holland will complete the term, which concludes at the end of December. He said he will not seek election to the seat in November.
He earned the votes of six of the eight councilors: Kevin Marshall, LaVonne Wilson, Jim Fairchild, Ken Woods Jr., and Kelly Gabliks.
Holland was one of eight Dallas residents interviewed by council members on Monday afternoon.
The others were: Debra Nord, Donald Ellingson, Jennie Rummell, Marsha Heeter, Nancy Adams, Paul Trahan, and Richard Hoefler. Two others, Andrew Woolsey and Marv Bennett, applied but later withdrew.
When asked why he wanted to serve on the council, Holland said he likes to be involved in the communities he lives in. Dallas has been no exception. He has served on the city’s budget committee and with the Dallas School District on its superintendent search and finance committees.
“I enjoy this type of service. I enjoy what I have seen of Dallas so far,” he said during the interview session, which was open to the public. “I would like to continue to serve.”
Holland said he would like to see improvements made on Ellendale Avenue in Dallas to alleviate potential traffic problems and is concerned about the short-staffed fire department.
“That could be a problem long-term,” he said.
In the economic development realm, he said the city of Dallas could encourage businesses that take advantage of the popularity of the wine tourism, especially in the downtown area.
“I think there is room for a community of Dallas’ size to try to find an identity that no other community has grabbed yet and build on it over a 10, 20, 30-year period of time,” Holland said.
He also emphasized the need for thinking decades ahead when planning for a city’s future and balancing limited resources to maintain services and a livable city.
“I think that’s the challenge,” he said. “This is a hard business and we have limited resources. How do you make a complicated community work for the citizens when you have limited resources and lots of needs?”
Stewart resigned from the council because he moved out of town for a job.