The newest member of Grandview Heights City Council is not so new after all.
Former council member Ed Hastie will be sworn in during council’s meeting Monday, Feb. 3, to fill the vacancy that resulted when Greta Kearns became mayor.
Council members voted Jan. 21 to select Hastie from among 10 applicants who submitted letters of interest after Kearns was elected as mayor in November.
Hastie previously served two terms on council from 2008 to 2015.
“I’m excited and honored to be back on council,” Hastie said. “I know how hard a decision it is to fill a vacancy on council. The first time I served we had to choose from, I think, 13 candidates to fill a seat, and it was a difficult choice.
“I thought my experience and skill set would be beneficial to council at this time, but I knew there were a lot of good candidates, so I’m grateful for the chance to serve again,” he said.
The city is on more solid financial ground than it has been for several years, Hastie said.
“One of our main tasks over the next couple years is to make sure we’re maintaining that strong financial condition,” he said. “When you think about it, we really went through at least two recessions here in Grandview: First, the Big Bear warehouse went under and that gave us our own Grandview recession; then, we had the national recession (in 2008) that hit everybody.”
Another big issue council and the administration will look at this year is the Dec. 31 expiration of the city’s 7.5-mill property tax.
“We’ll be having to decide what type of city-services levy we’re going to need to put on the ballot,” Hastie said.
Kearns’ council term has two years remaining, and Hastie said he intends to run for a full term in 2021.
“I’ve really missed it since I left council,” he said. “I’m Grandview born and raised, and except for being away for school, I’ve basically lived here my whole life.
“There’s a great deal of satisfaction that comes from giving back to your community,” Hastie said. “It’s something everyone says, but it really is true. Growing up when David Colley was mayor, I was always interested in local government, and Ray DeGraw has served as a mentor to me. He encouraged me to run for council the first time (in 2007).
“Now, with Greta as mayor, which I’m excited and supportive about, I’m eager to rejoin council,” Hastie said.
“We are excited to have council member Hastie back on council,” council president Emily Keeler said. “His previous experience coupled with his professional expertise will be an asset to our group. I think we have a phenomenal group of people who are ready to work hard to move Grandview Heights forward.”
Hastie owns Hastie Law Offices in Grandview and co-owns two Tri-Village-area restaurants: Woodlands Backyard and Pointe Tavern.