CALABASAS : 2 Councilmen Are Returned to Office

Two Calabasas City Council members were voted back into office this week in the city's second election since it incorporated three years ago.

Councilmen Dennis Washburn and Bob Hill received 41% and 35% of the vote respectively during Tuesday's election, after campaigning on platforms touting their accomplishments during the start-up of the city.

"When I was putting together the list of our accomplishments over three years, I realized what a monumental job we've done," said Washburn, 51. "I heard it over and over from people: 'You worked real hard, we're proud of what you've done, and we're glad you're there.' "

Washburn and Hill, 57, said they were both pleased that the fledgling city has been able to establish a library, acquire land for four parks and a tennis and swim club and increase public safety and sheriff's services.

Washburn said his top priorities for the next four years will include emergency preparedness and efforts to block development plans at nearby Soka University and Ahmanson Ranch.

The sole challenger in the race, Ted Rosenquist, received 24% of the vote. Only 14.5% of the city's registered voters went to the polls.

Voters also approved a measure capping city tax revenues at $5.7 million, the amount of last year's budget. It was a step required of new cities by Proposition 13, which, among other things, set appropriations limits for existing cities in 1978, said Calabasas Finance Officer Sheila Cumberland.

The state measure was intended to prevent cities from carrying over tax revenues from one year to another. The limit may be adjusted each year, however, according to population changes.

"It kind of backfired because now cities have almost no reserves," Cumberland said. "But we are required to do this."

No new city in California has refused to set such limits, Cumberland said.

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