Candidates announce their intention to seek election as Camas mayor

Camas City Council Member Steve Hogan and Camas business owner Jennifer Senescu to seek position

A pair of candidates have already emerged in the upcoming race for the position of mayor of the city of Camas.

Current Camas City Council Member Steve Hogan and Camas business owner Jennifer Senescu announced their intention to seek election for the position vacated earlier this week by Barry McDonnell, who resigned effective immediately.

A news release from the Clark County Elections Department announced that the position will be added to the list of offices open for filing beginning Mon., May 17 through Fri., May 21.

Here’s a brief look at the candidates (in alphabetical order):

Steve Hogan

Steve Hogan
Steve Hogan

“I have 16 years of experience as a council member and over 30 years of industrial managerial experience,’’ Hogan said in his announcement. “Camas has been home for my family for 27 years.  During my time on council, I have been actively involved on the finance committee, administration committee, Georgia Pacific Advisory Committee, Lacamas Watershed Advisory Committee focusing on Lacamas, Round and Fallen Leaf Lake water quality.

Hogan is also a current member of the Board of Directors of the Columbia River Economic Development Council.  He is also a member of the Camas Washougal Rotary Club, the Downtown Camas Economic Vitality committee and he has held the mayor pro-tem position on the Camas City Council in both 2014 and 2017.  He is also past president of the Camas Educational Foundation.

“I am running to help stabilize our city government,’’ Hogan said. “I believe in preserving and improving our Camas heritage of being a city that prides itself on a strong city government, outstanding school system and a high quality of life.  I support the vision of Camas as a place where people who live in Camas, work in Camas.  We need to do what we can to assure that we grow at a rate that is sustainable.  

“As a city, we have prided ourselves on good financial management,’’ Hogan added. “We need to have balanced financial strength in the future while sustaining our high quality of life.  I have pride in knowing that Camas is, has been and will be a great place to live, work and play.’’

Jennifer Senescu

Jennifer Senescu
Jennifer Senescu

In her announcement, Senescu described herself as a lifelong Camas resident and business owner. She grew up in Camas, graduated from Camas High School and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from Washington State University Pullman. 

“I am running for Camas Mayor to help restore the public’s faith in our city’s leadership, bring more living wage jobs to our community, maintain our treasured parks and protect our cherished Camas quality of life,” Senescu said. “I’m ready to provide strong leadership and honest, two-way communication as your Mayor.” 

Senescu currently serves as executive director of the Camas-Washougal Chamber of Commerce. She has been a partner in the ownership of Camas Gallery for the past eight years. She has been married for 20 years to her husband Jim Senescu, a local attorney, and they have one child who attends Discovery High School in Camas. 

“As Mayor of Camas, I’m committed to the ideal of reducing burdensome hurdles on local businesses. Citizens are rightfully demanding tax relief. We must prioritize spending while adequately funding public safety to keep our community safe,” Senescu said. “As Mayor, I will never forget that I work for the citizens. I will never support something so unsustainable as a $78 million pool bond that would not only add a horrendous tax burden on our citizens but also have an adverse effect on our City’s financial stability.” 

In 2019, Camas residents voted overwhelmingly to reject the City Council’s pool bond proposal by a margin of 90 percent to 10 percent. 

“People want to live where they work,’’ Senescu said. “Yes, we need residential housing, but we also need more family wage jobs in our community. When people are allowed to work where they live, we reduce traffic and wear and tear on our highways; we enjoy cleaner air and our citizens get to spend more time with their family instead of sitting in traffic in a painful commute. I’ll provide strong leadership at City Hall to improve our city’s economic vitality while maintaining the charm that has made Camas famous.’’

Online filing period

The online period to file a declaration of candidacy will be available at clark.wa.gov/elections

beginning at 9 a.m., Mon., May 17 through 4 p.m. Fri., May 21. To file online as a candidate, a citizen must have a valid email address and be registered to vote in the jurisdiction for which they are filing. Candidates will also be able to pay any applicable filing fees online using a valid Visa, MasterCard, or American Express credit card. Mobile devices are not recommended. For best results use Chrome. 

The in-person period to file a declaration of candidacy will begin at 8 a.m., Mon., May 17 through 5 p.m., Fri., May 21. Physical distancing requirements will be adhered to, with a limited number of candidates allowed at a time. 

Candidates wishing to file for office in person can do so at the Clark County Elections Department, 1408 Franklin St. Credit cards are not accepted for payment when filing in person. To determine if you meet all the qualifications for an elective office, please refer to the “2021 Candidate Guide and Local Voters’ Pamphlet Specifications” that can be found on the Clark County Elections Department website at clark.wa.gov/elections. 

If you have further questions, you can contact the Clark County Elections Office by calling (564) 397-2345, by email at elections@clark.wa.gov or by visiting the office at 1408 Franklin St.

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