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MISSION VIEJO : 2 Winners Get Ready to Push for Library

November 14, 1994|FRANK MESSINA

Voters showed their top priority last week by electing two pro-library candidates to the City Council.

Now the pressure is on the new council to show how quickly it can start construction of the library.

"We would like to fast track the library, definitely," said Mayor Susan Withrow, who finished first in Tuesday's election. "I think that would reflect what a majority of the community wants."

Withrow and her running mate, council member-elect Sherri Butterfield, campaigned hard on the promise of building a library to replace the current facility.

They finished one-two in the polls in a field of seven, with three seats to be filled by the voters.

"I would like to see us move in an orderly manner to swift completion of the library," Butterfield said. "We have a lot of work in front of us."

But their opponents in the recent election say the vote wasn't necessarily a mandate for an open checkbook to spend lavishly on the library.

Running on a platform of fiscal responsibility, Councilman-elect Larry Smith and Larry Gilbert ran hard behind the top vote-getters.

Smith wound up some 500 votes behind Butterfield and Gilbert was just over 1,000 votes out of the third open council seat.

Both saw their finishes as proof that Mission Viejo taxpayers want city spending to be managed more carefully, even on the library.

"The bottom line is, I believe I got a message out indicating there is out of control spending in City Hall," Gilbert said.

Smith said his initial hope is "that we are going to have unified decisions that will have positive consequences for the future, not the knee-jerk decisions the council has made in our city's infancy.

"I plan to provide this council enough information on the library so we can make good decisions."

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