Retiring council members Russ Lesser and Jim Walker stepped down amid presentations and applause Tuesday night, as newly elected council members Connie Sieber and Larry Dougharty began four-year terms.
Sieber and Dougharty were presented with whistles by Councilwoman Jan Dennis, who encouraged them to “whistle if you need any help or you think we can be of service to you.”
Sieber, a former member of the city Public Works Commission, thanked her supporters and those who packed the crowded chambers to welcome her. Dougharty praised Lesser and Walker for their “outstanding” work on the council.
Lesser, who was elected to the council in 1978, said the eight years have passed quickly. In that time, he said, the city has increased its parkland, developed the Chevron property and lowered the crime rate.
“We did a lot of great things during these eight years and I’m really proud to be a small part of it,” Lesser said.
Walker, who has served on the council since 1982, called his term “enjoyable.” He said it has been his goal to run government with a profit motive similar to business.
“Every decision I’ve made I’ve thought of the people of Manhattan Beach and the fact that they would either profit or suffer by my judgment,” he said.