Tag Archives: laura smith

Laura Smith Elected as Bishop Mayor for Fourth Time

There’s a new mayor in town… sort of. Mayor Pro Tem, Laura Smith, who has previously served as the Bishop Mayor three times was unanimously voted in to the position Monday evening.

Smith has been on the Bishop City Council for nearly ten years. She is currently the longest tenured member of the council.

The retired registered nurse presented outgoing Mayor, Jim Ellis with a commemorative gavel containing the two previous dates he served as the Bishop Mayor.

After receiving the award, Ellis spoke to attendees about how much he enjoyed being the Mayor this past year. “It has been an honor to serve the people of Bishop, and I look forward to continue to serve the citizens of the city.” Ellis said.

As far as the position of mayor pro tem, Councilman, Chris Costello was nominated by his peers for the position. Costello, who is also a pastor in Bishop will serve as mayor pro tem for the first time after being appointed to serve in the city council last year.

Though unanimously approved by the City of Bishop, it appeared as though that was not going to be the case for Costello. Council-member Stephen Muchovej initially nominated Karen Schwartz for the position citing the fact that Costello was up for re-election next year. However, after some discussion between the board, Muchovej decided to change his stance and vote for Mr. Costello.

Ribbon Cut on Bishop’s Warren Street

Bishop Celebrates Warren Street

City of Bishop officials cut the ribbon on the 2.1 million dollar Warren Street Improvement project Wednesday morning.  The effort was funded through state of California gas tax revenues.  Public works director Dave Grah was joined by three of the five city council members as the ribbon was cut at the intersection of Warren and Academy.  The public works director thanked many for their efforts on the project especially public works staff, including Deston Dishion. Grah thanked members of the “Warren Street Focus Group” who guided the design.  That group includes Beth Himelhoch, Dave Metcalf, Ray Finch, Pete Korrgiebel, Tawni Thomson, Janice Kabala, Martin West, Pam Mitchell, Jerry Gabriel, Ed Morse, Elaine Kabala, Dick Distel, Karol Tong, Diana Pietrasanta, Gail Swain, Skandar Reid, and Charles Milligan.

Advanced Asphalt of Truckee served as the construction contractor, and the main subcontractor was V and C Construction from Minden.  The effort was designed by Triad Holmes Associates of Bishop.

City Council Members Laura Smith, Joe Pecsi and Karen Schwartz spoke at the ribbon cutting.  Mayor Pro-tem Smith encourages folks to shop local in support of the businesses that were inconvenienced during construction.  Councilman Pecsi thanked the focus group for their effort and commitment.  Councilwoman Schwartz thanked the focus group and praised the projects pedestrian friendly features.  Bishop Chamber of commerce and visitors bureau Executive Director Tawni Thomson praised Grah and city staff for reaching out to the community for input.

Left to right, Deston Dishion, Joe Pecsi, Laura Smith and granddaughter Mia, Dave Grah, Karen Schwartz

According to Dave Grah, this first phase of the Warren Street project improved North Warren Street and part of South Warren Street with new pavement, curb,sidewalk, street trees, street lights, pocket parks, seating areas, platforms for performances, and colored concrete with designs. The blocks of Church, Academy, and Pine streets between Warren and Main were also improved as part of the project. Other features such as sculpture, banners, archways, bike racks, and a public restroom are also planned. In addition to addressing serious pavement deterioration, poor sidewalks, and drainage issues, the project was intended to make the area more attractive to pedestrians to stroll, stop, shop, eat, and to see a show. Future phases of the project in the next several years are planned to extend improvements to the full length of the street.

photos by Arnie Palu

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