March 19, 2012
When the Weekly spoke with Pacific Grove Councilman Bill Kampe three months ago about the 2012 mayoral race—an open seat, with incumbent Carmelita Garcia now running for county supervisor—he said he was ready to retire from P.G. politics.
“I promised my wife it would be a four-year adventure," he said at the time. He was elected to a four-year council term in 2008.
Apparently his wife, Cheryl, has come around: Kampe has announced his intent to run for mayor this November. "We've had some long discussions about that, and at this point she's supportive," he says.
Kampe attributes his own change of heart to encouragement from fellow residents who'd like to see him as mayor. "I've had a lot of people approach me," he says. "I eventually looked at the situation and started to agree with them."
He says sorting out the city's CalPERS and pension obligations, which "have reached a fever pitch," is a top priority. The P.G. Police Officers Association is suing the city over its efforts to scale back retirement benefits; PGPOA contract negotiations are also happening this year. "I think we absolutely have to get through the lawsuit before we get into the specifics," he says.
Councilmen Ken Cuneo and Dan Miller have also discussed plans to run, as the Weekly reported in December.