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Poulsbo council gives seat to Musgrove

Downtown businessman David Musgrove was chosen as Poulsbo
Downtown businessman David Musgrove was chosen as Poulsbo's newest City Council member from a field of five candidates Wednesday night.
— image credit: Brad Camp/For the Herald

POULSBO — The owner of a favorite Front Street coffeehouse will serve as Poulsbo’s newest city council member.

David Musgrove, owner of Hot Shots Java, was selected Wednesday night from a pool of five candidates vying to fill the seat left vacant by Dale Rudolph, who retired last month after a 17-year council career.

Musgrove, 50, was selected by a 5-1 council vote. Councilman Jim Henry voted against his appointment.

Musgrove was sworn in immediately and voted on several agenda items during Wednesday’s meeting. Afterwards he said he has a lot of studying to do.

“My primary focus is to enable the city, the people and the leadership, to move forward,” he said. “I’m really proud of the city. That makes me proud to be part of how things happen.”

The new councilman will take over Rudolph’s former assignments, which include seats on the city’s Public Works and Economic Development committees. Those committees delve deep into issues before taking their recommendations to the City Council, which has the final vote.

Musgrove will also serve as a liason to the Port of Poulsbo.

He’ll receive copies of the city’s codes, budget and comprehensive plan, which amounts to several inches of reading, said Mayor Becky Erickson. A seat on the council also means a personal adjustment, as members become public figures, she said.

“The learning curve is huge,” she said. “The City Council positions require a lot of work.”

The council will hold a retreat Feb. 5, when members will discuss their goals for the year and give direction to the mayor.

Council members receive $6,000 annually. Musgrove’s term will expire at the end of this year, at which time he may run in the regular election.

“The tipping point for me was his entrepreneurship of the historic downtown area,” said Councilwoman Connie Lord, who motioned for Musgrove’s selection.

He offers an important perspective as a downtown business owner, especially considering the council’s efforts to establish downtown redevelopment plans, Lord said.

In his application, Musgrove said his experience in various organizations and clubs, as well as hearing the daily concerns from his coffeehouse patrons, will serve him as a councilman. He said he hopes to maintain Poulsbo’s values of culture and tradition.

Before opening Hot Shots in 2003, he directed operations for Acme Southeast, and before that led property acquisitions for Steed Properties, both in Miami.

Candidates for the seat were interviewed by the council in December. Four candidates originally applied for the position by an October deadline, but the council voted to extend the application process into November. Musgrove was one of two additional applicants. One of the original contenders for the seat pulled out, saying extending the deadline wasn’t professional in a letter to Erickson.

At nine years, Musgrove was the second-longest citizen of Poulsbo among the group.

Councilman Jeff Bauman, who was appointed to the council in a similar process last year, noted the variety among the applicants’ experience. He commended Musgrove for already being in-touch with citizens.

“You really have a pulse on this community and a very broad background, well-rounded to serve in this position,” he said.

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