Vacant Chula Vista City Council seat filled

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CHULA VISTA, Calif. -- Steve Miesen was appointed Tuesday to fill the vacant seat on the Chula Vista City Council.

The council had to appoint a councilmember by next week to avoid a costly special election.

For a time, it appeared the city would have to spend the money that, according to its city manager, was slated for police officers, libraries and parks and recreation.

Several people were nominated, but none were appointed.

Miesen was one hopeful who appeared to have support, but his nomination failed after concerns were raised about a conflict of interest. His company holds Chula Vista's trash contract.

Chula Vista's city attorney said Miesen would not be allowed to vote on future contracts involving his company.

Former Mayor Shirley Horton was also nominated, but she didn't get enough votes.

At that point, Mayor Mary Salas grew impatient.

"Every candidate that has been offered, whether they'd be Republican or Democrat, pink or purple...this council has to be politically mature -- enough!" Salas said.

In the end, Councilmember Pam Bensoussan nominated Miesen again -- the same person she had rejected earlier.

This time, Miesen got unanimous support and was sworn in. He took his seat on the council and offered a few words.

"Thank you very much, I am humbled. Thank you," Miesen said.