Four in the running for open Belmont council seat

Daily Post Staff Writer

The Belmont City Council hopes to appoint a new council member to fill the late Eric Reed’s seat by the end of the month.

Reed died on Dec. 8 after battling prostate cancer, and the council has until Feb. 6 to replace him, according to state law.

At its Tuesday (Jan. 9) meeting, the council decided it would interview four of the 10 applicants for the vacancy. They are Planning Commissioners Julia Mates and Thomas McCune, Parks and Recreation Commissioner Craig Michaels
and Google employee.

Here is a brief rundown of each candidate:

• Kaspi has been a resident of Belmont for one year. He has two young children, served in the Israeli Air Force and is currently the director of new business development for Google. Kaspi said in his application that he wants to create a lively downtown, improve the city’s infrastructure (roads and drains) and create incentives for small businesses to move to the city.

• Mates has been on the Planning Commission since 2015 and has lived in the city for 12 years. She is a historical consultant for federal, state and local governments and did a historical evaluation at Sharp Park in Pacifica. Mates said in her application that she wants to find more money to improve roads, specifically Ralston and Alameda de las Pulgas, and work on creating a new Barrett Community Center.

• McCune has been on the Planning Commission for three years, and has also been on the city’s infrastructure improvement team and the finance commission. He works for Kobalt Brands, an advertising company in San Francisco. McCune wrote in his application that he wants to “develop ‘Downtown Belmont’ into a small but real downtown with a sense of place,” to work on increasing the amount of housing in Belmont and to improve public transit availability in the city.

• Michaels has been a city resident for six years and previously lived in San Carlos. He has been on the Parks and Recreation Commission for five years and does marketing for Apple TV. Michaels said that he wants to bring development to the city while also preserving its small-village character, to improve the city’s infrastructure and to work on creating a new Barrett Community Center.