Robin Cape not running for second term on City Council

Asheville City Council member Robin Cape, elected in 2005, announced via a Facebook message over the weekend that she would not seek re-election to her seat.

Cape cites several reasons for her decision, including life changes stemming from a tumultuous year that included the death of her father and the breakup of her marriage, and the need to get on with a career.

“Truthfully, Council pays very little,” she says. “I’m a recently separated woman with two teenage children looking at college. It’s timely to begin looking at my own career rather than postponing it until I’m 56.”

But she also says it is time to move the sustainability discussion she has championed into a larger, regional arena.

“I feel I have positioned myself in the past few years [so] that I can play a role in the larger conversation about sustainability,” she says. “Now how does that work? I don’t know. I’m still figuring it out. There’s some form of consultant business that I have ahead of me in this.”

And, she said, she feels like the word “sustainability” is no longer the outsider term it was when she initially ran for the seat.

“Everybody who’s running, who I’ve seen running so far, is running on a sustainability platform. Kelly [Miller] is interested in it. Brownie [Newman] is interested in it. The mayor is interested in it. You don’t need me. I’m redundant. And I think it’s a unique time right now where there’s some real openings and I could be of more service outside the city forum than I can inside the city forum.”

As for the remaining six months of her term, Cape says she hopes to shepherd in some of the changes in the Downtown Master Plan, instill green-building initiatives downtown and see parts of the transit master plan come before Council.

“But you get into the silly season of elections, things naturally slow down,” she says. “You’ll see less controversial items on the agenda for sure.”

As for the upcoming campaign, she is not ready to throw her support behind any specific candidate.

“I really want to wait to see who the candidates are. It’s really hard to think about endorsing before you even know who’s running,” she says. “And campaigning is one of my least favorite activities in the world.”

Brian Postelle, staff writer


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13 thoughts on “Robin Cape not running for second term on City Council

  1. Gordon Smith

    Robin Cape has made sustainability a household word in the city of Asheville. She’s been a reliable progressive vote, and her ascension ought to let everyone know that if you have the smarts and the hustle, you can run for City Council and win.

  2. Mysterylogger

    1 down more to go got to vote this worless, lameduck lot out!!!!!

  3. Matt Howard

    I wish good luck to you in your new lifepath Robin. I have found you to be a woman of character, and a damn fine musician too.

  4. Gordon Smith

    Thanks, Robin, for an excellent term. Your work on sustainability issues has brought the city many steps closer to its aspirations.

  5. 9-volt

    Robin, you should be proud of the work you have done. Thanks for your service.

  6. bobaloo

    I’m just curious what kind of deal Gordon cut with her so he had one less person to run against.
    Watch your back Bothwell!

  7. John Schmolkin

    Well I imagine Robin did her best, so I will thank her for serving our town on that note alone. But I am glad she is not running again. Hopefully someone with family connections here will take the vacated seat and look out for Asheville like only a local can. Keep the good things about Asheville in place, disallow development, and watch out for the taxpayers. God knows we do not need outsider, way-leftwing “ideas” about sustainability, etc, wasting our time and tax money.

    Enjoy your new life Robin. Hey, maybe you can work to make a few more parks around town. Being surrounded by natural park land and the Blue Ridge Parkway shouldn’t stop an “activist” from making more green space anyway. Or how about expanding on the sustainable victory of allowing chickens and bee hives in town? Perhaps hogs and cows can be worked in next.

  8. Paul -V-

    bobaloo: I know you’re bitter ever since your parents kicked you out of the basement. But really, no need to take it out here. Topix forums is a far better venue for your not-so-unique style of trolling.

    Robin: Thanks for your service, and supporting policies that keep Asheville a wonderful place to live.

  9. bobaloo

    bobaloo: I know you’re bitter ever since your parents kicked you out of the basement. But really, no need to take it out here. Topix forums is a far better venue for your not-so-unique style of trolling

    Oooh, good one! You got the basement baby jab, Topix call-out and the predictable troll label all in one!
    Touch a nerve, did I? Come on into the forums if you want to spar.

    By the way: It was a joke you tool.

  10. Bruce Mulkey

    Thank you for your willingness to serve the citizens of Asheville, Robin. I wish you well in your new endeavors.

  11. Truhart

    What a loss for the area. Robin, when you served on Woodfin’s water board, you not only helped save their community’s pristine water shed, you saved that district from the dubious $17 million repair bill quoted by the engineering firm hired by the previous board. You and Henry worked to get the necessary repairs done for under $200 thousand. Only the most greedy, or ignorant, are glad to hear you won’t be running again. I had hoped that you might decide to run against Burr. But honesty in public office too often doesn’t pay enough. Thank you for what you’ve achieved during your service. You’ll be missed.

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