Former Councilor Tyler Smith Shares Why He Didn’t Seek Re-Election

Local attorney and former Canby City Councilor Tyler Smith did not seek another term in office last November after being appointed to the council in 2016. At the time, he didn’t say why. And in public comments last week, he explained that this was because he didn’t want to overshadow the swearing-in of new Councilor Shawn Varwig, who was elected to Smith’s seat after running unopposed.

He broke his silence at the March 20 City Council meeting, appearing during the portion set aside for public comment. And, as it turned out, he had a lot to say.

To hear Smith tell it, the issues began before he was even on the council. During his “contentious” appointment process, he says he was called “too conservative” and “overly political,” and claims that an unnamed member of the City Council attempted to pay another attorney to do a background check on him. Other “childish behavior” he says he’s observed included members rolling their eyes at other councilors, grandstanding and saying they don’t want to sit next to other councilors.

At a meeting where the denial of a proclamation to coincide with International Transgender Day of Visibility would later become a major topic of discussion, Smith also raised a concern about proclamations: the city makes too many of them.

Finally, Smith said the council reports, during which members are expected to share news from the various committees and community partners for which they serve as liaisons, often divulge into unnecessary updates about things that aren’t crucial to city business.

The Canby Now Podcast is dedicated to the radical idea that news is not a product and should be free for all. Ironically, for this model to survive, we do need the (voluntary) support of our community. Find out more about how you can help sustain the work of the Canby Now Podcast for as little as $1 a month at canbynowpod.com/support. Thanks!