Add State Rep. Oletha Faust-Goudeau to the list of people who might take a shot at filling the District 1 City Council seat that Carl Brewer gave up yesterday. The third-term Democrat said she is seriously considering the position and has a petition that she’ll need 100 people to sign in order to be eligible. (See rules here.) But, she tells The Hall Monitor, she’s not yet certain. If she did run, she says she would step down from her District 84 House seat, leaving it up to the precinct committee to appoint someone to complete her term in the Legislature.
So why consider giving up one seat for another? Faust-Goudeau says when she’s talking to her constituents in District 84 (See District map PDF), they’re often looking for quick fixes to their problems — be it repairing sidewalks or eliminating blight. And in her district, which contains “Beat 44” the area widely known as having some of the worst crime and blight in the city, she feels she could have more immediate impact on people’s problems than as a lawmaker in Topeka. “I am a more hands-on type of person, and I interact with people on a regular basis,” she said. But she said she doesn’t want the race to fill Brewer’s spot to get messy. There are a lot of qualified candidates, she said, noting some of those those mentioned in previous posts. “I’m certainly not trying to create any friction,” she said. “I’m a lover, not a fighter.”
The race begins next Tuesday when the vacancy is officially announced during the Council meeting. “By the last day, we’ll probably get 101 names thrown in the hat,” Faust-Goudeau said.