November 12, 2009 in Washington Voices

Trulove up for second tour

Former Cheney mayor eagerly takes reins again
By The Spokesman-Review
Dan Pelle photo

Tom Trulove, a city councilman since 2005 and a former mayor of Cheney, has been elected mayor again. He is also the chairman of the economics department at Eastern Washington University.
(Full-size photo)

Cheney will have a new mayor at the start of 2010.

Tom Trulove will take the office after a 1,167 to 573 victory over Mayor Allan Gainer in the Nov. 3 election.

But it’s not his first time in the mayor’s office. Trulove was mayor of Cheney from 1978 to 1986, leaving when then-Gov. Booth Gardner appointed him to the Northwest Power Planning Council.

“It was fun to be elected,” Trulove said. “It’s a moment that you savor when you come out on top.”

He said in the next couple of months he will be attending briefings at City Hall, taking tours of the facilities and getting to know the staff. After he takes office, he has many plans for the city.

One of the first will be making recommendations for the council to appoint someone to fill the seat he’s held since 2005. He said the new council member must be willing to run in an election next fall and in 2011 when the term expires.

“There are a lot of good candidates, I think,” Trulove said.

He also hopes to start establishing a relationship with city employees, since he’ll be their new boss. He said the city has a great staff and he is looking forward to working with them.

“Arlene (Fisher), the city administrator, is just a dynamo,” he said.

Choices for Cheney will also be a priority for Trulove, and he is hoping the new and improved comprehensive plan will be a shared vision of what the city will be 20 years down the road.

Once the new comprehensive plan is in place, the city will be taking a look at zoning codes and building rules and regulations.

“That’s going to be some heavy work,” he said.

He also wants to look for options for the community center, since the park bond on the ballot narrowly missed the supermajority required to pass.

Marketing Cheney to the outside world is another goal Trulove has set for himself. He said that finding companies that want to build in the new Cheney Research and Industrial Park will be a priority, since the park is a key element for Cheney’s future economic growth.

Trulove wants to find grants for the city and establish stronger relationships among the city, Eastern Washington University and Cheney Public Schools.

He said that this term in the mayor’s office will be easier than the last time; as head of the economics department at EWU, his schedule has more flexibility. His professional interests – public finance, economic development and international economics – will be an advantage as mayor.

“The things that I do and all the associations I have are related to cities,” he said.

Trulove is looking forward to the next four years.

“I’m going to try my hardest; I’m going to do my best,” he said. “This is going to be fun.”

Thoughts and opinions on this story? Click here to comment >>

Get stories like this in a free daily email