Hart picked to fill Ontario City Council vacancy

Ken Hart has been named to the Ontario City Council, filling a seat left vacant by the resignation of Dan Capron. (Enterprise file photo)

ONTARIO – Ken Hart, chief financial officer for Valley Family Health Care and former hospital president, was appointed Tuesday to fill a vacancy on the Ontario City Council.

Hart will complete the remaining term of Dan Capron, who resigned from the council because he moved outside of city limits. Councilors aren’t paid. Acting as a council, they set policies for the city, approve annual spending, and oversee City Manager Adam Brown.

Hart is no stranger to city issues. He serves on the city’s Budget Committee and previously served on the Public Works and Pool committees.

Hart, who has lived in Ontario 16 years, was president of Saint Alphonsus Medical Center Ontario until taking the new job in August at Valley Family Health.

“This focus on health care and mental health is the primary reason for my asking to be appointed to the city council,” Hart said in his letter to the council.

He said he could provide the council a “unique perspective” to help the city “during this uniquely difficult time in our community and our country’s history due to the Covid pandemic.”

Hart wrote that housing, recreational opportunities, access to services and food stability “all play a part in the overall health of our community.”

Others who applied for the vacancy included:

*Lynelle Christiani, manager of the Malheur County Fairgrounds.

*David Armstrong, information security officer for Malheur Federal Credit Union and director of the nonprofit Four Rivers Healthy Community.

*Candace Shock, a former teacher and now president of Scientific Ecological Services Inc.

*Clyde Esplin, a pilot with Beck Spray Service and property manager.

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