Kaminski to leave council

Resignation will take effect Sept. 19

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Kevin Kaminski, who represents District 2 on the Steamboat Springs City Council, has decided to purchase an apartment within the district so he can remain on the Council even as he closes a purchase of a house outside his district.

— Steamboat Springs City Council member Kevin Kaminski will resign from the council next month.

On Friday, Kaminski finalized the purchase of a home outside District 3, which he was elected to represent in November. That district includes areas south of Walton Creek Road. The home Kaminski purchased is on Steamboat Boulevard, which is part of District 2.

The councilman had considered living in a rented apartment within District 3 while his wife and two young children lived in the new house, but he said Tuesday that after consulting with family, friends, city officials and other council members, he decided to step down. He will submit a letter of resignation Sept. 19.

"I have found myself in a lose-lose situation," Kaminski said, reading from a statement at Tuesday's council meeting. "I will, with sadness, be tendering my resignation as of Sept. 19."

In his statement, Kaminski cited the importance of adhering to "the current rule by which we govern."

Section 3.10 of the Steamboat Springs City Charter, regarding vacancies on the City Council, states:

"A council member's office shall become vacant whenever he resigns, dies, is recalled, or becomes a non-resident of the city or the district from which he was elected or appointed."

Last week, Kaminski said that during his campaign and until very recently he had no plans whatsoever to purchase a home on Steamboat Boule-vard.

"I had no idea that would take effect," Kaminski said about the housing opportunity. "But without a doubt, my family comes first."

His two children are four and nine years old.

The family will move into the Steamboat Boulevard home Sept. 22, Kaminski said. A buyer has been found for the family's current home on Red Hawk Court.

"I can't win on this one," Kaminski said about the conflict between supporting his family and serving his community. "I'm just trying to do the right thing."

Council President Ken Brenner said he is not surprised by Kaminski's decision.

"I've never doubted that Kevin was going to put his family's best interests first - that's the kind of guy he is," Brenner said. "He will continue to serve as a District 3 councilman until he completes the move."

According to the charter, upon Kaminski's resignation next month, the City Council will have 30 days to fill the position by a majority vote. Brenner said City Clerk Julie Jordan will post a notice of the position's availability, and Steamboat residents living in District 3 will be able to apply.

A new council member would serve until the Novem-ber 2007 election.

Kaminski said he was hesitant to leave the council because of a concern that his replacement may not share his pro-business, pro-Triple Crown viewpoints.

He said before announcing his resignation Tuesday that he received assurances from other council members that his replacement will be someone who shares his views.

"I'm representing a certain faction of people, and to try to continue representing that faction is only fair," Kaminski said.

Brenner praised Kaminski's service on the council and said he is glad Kaminski is not leaving quite yet.

"He's been a strong council member," Brenner said. "I think he surprised a lot of people. We made better decisions with him (on the council). I think the best example is affordable housing, especially during Riverwalk, where he talked about the importance of looking out for the workers here in the community. I think he was a very strong representative for the community on housing issues. He really showed a lot of leadership."

- To reach Mike Lawrence, call 871-4203 or e-mail mlawrence@steamboatpilot.com

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