Childs and Fitzwater Advance in PO Council Primary

Both candidates say change is needed in council dynamics.
By Chris Henry
Results from the primary race for the Port Orchard City Council at-large seat to be vacated by Bob Geiger show Jerry Childs and Dick Fitzwater moving on to the November general election. Childs earned nearly 50 percent (49.69) and Fitzwater got nearly 31 percent (30.55) of the vote, with a total of 982 ballots cast.
The third candidate, attorney Dennis Xavier Goss, earned nearly 19 percent (18.64), and write-in candidates earned 1.12 percent of the vote.
Downtown redevelopment has taken center stage in the City Council race. The council has been working for more than a year on a downtown plan that could spell relief for the city’s economy, but some merchants and property owners are frustrated with how long it’s taken.
Childs was unavailable for comment, but Fitzwater said from what he’s learned in door-belling for the position, the biggest issue on voters’ minds is “lack of action by the council.”
Fitzwater said he took note of Childs’ lead in the race.
“I’m glad I made it through. I have a lot of work to do,” he said. “Jerry Childs got 50 percent of the vote; I’ve got 30 percent. I’ve got to do a little strategy and see where I go from here.”
A former manager of Karcher Creek Sewer District, Fitzwater has said his familiarity with local government entities would serve him well on the city council.
“I know how to analyze problems, achieve consensus, work with other government agencies, and make important decisions,” he said.
Fitzwater is a Bremerton native who has lived in Port Orchard since 1991.
Childs has called what’s ailing the city council “analysis paralysis.” He has said he would jump start council meetings by providing firm direction.
Childs has said he is for downtown redevelopment and would take a systematic approach to addressing funding and infrastructure shortcomings that stand in its way
A former Seattle resident, Childs moved from Bainbridge Island to Port Orchard two years ago. He has lived in Kitsap County for 17 years.
Childs has been a firefighter for 40 years and has worked in various positions with the Seattle Fire Department, including administrative roles. He is now the captain of Ladder 3 in the Seattle Central District and expects to retire in January.
Goss, who said he intentionally did not go door-belling, had the following comment, “Since I only put up signs and I wasn’t going to do any more, since it was out of my family’s pocket, I guess I got what I expected. I don’t feel bad, and I don’t see any ultimate change in Port Orchard.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Before you post, please complete the prompt below.

Please enter the word MILK here: