Council appointed September at a hastily called meeting April 2 in the wake of Council Member Brigette Peterson’s resignation March 31. Peterson is running for mayor and was compelled by state law to resign when she turned in her nominating petitions.
September is a senior real estate, land use and construction program manager with a real estate investment trust. He has been a Gilbert resident for 15 years.
September’s appointment comes less than seven months after his appointment to the Planning Commission. He was one of the 105 applicants for Eddie Cook’s vacated council seat and part of the group of eight applicants selected to interview for the seat. Bill Spence ultimately was appointed.
After Peterson’s resignation, council considered the applicants who were passed over for Cook’s seat rather than open a new application process.
Spence joined the deliberations and said he was “unencumbered” by anyone on whom he could consider from the larger pool as opposed to the other seven finalists for Cook's seat. He said he reviewed all 105 applications at least twice each.
Council Member Aimee Yentes, however, was absent after giving birth in the morning to a daughter.
In his March 17 interview before council, September said the role of government is to provide safe, reliable services at the lowest possible cost and to be responsive to citizens.
September complimented council for listening to the community and balancing the needs of the few with those of the entire town. As an example, he mentioned changes to the proposed 2020 General Plan in response to community input.
In transportation, he said the town’s roads must keep up with the town’s growth and that growth should pay for growth.
He called for the town to collaborate with neighboring cities and used the coronavirus pandemic as an example of where that is needed.
September said the town must be an area leader in economic development, particular with job creators. He also called for investment in the town’s youth, which he said would pay off down the line.
September said his job has allowed him to see many councils operate, both good and bad, and he will apply the lessons he has learned from watching those councils in his decision-making.
The council also bid farewell to Peterson, who was first elected in 2014. She was vice mayor in 2018. Mayor Jenn Daniels offered praise and said Peterson possibly had been council liaison to more groups than any council member ever.
Peterson thanked her colleagues in brief remarks.
“It’s been an honor to serve, and I hope to do so again soon,” she said.
Council could be meeting again as soon as April 7 to make one more appointment. Council Member Jordan Ray is expected to resign after turning in his nominating petitions for justice of the peace of the Highland Justice Court. Petitions are due 5 p.m. April 6.