Meet Caroline Belleci, Candidate For University Place City Council

She is running against Howard Lee for Position 7.

Caroline A. Belleci


Where do you work and what is your job title? 

Pierce County Community Connections, Program Specialist


When and Where Were You Born?

1959, Germany


Where do you live now and  how long have you lived there?

University Place, 25 years


Spouse or domestic partner if any: 

Spouse - Tony



Vincent & Derrick


Education (include graduation date(s), if any):

BA – University of Puget Sound (1981)

AA – Western Oklahoma State College (1979)


Military Service (include year(s) of discharge, if any): 



Memberships and affiliations with clubs and other organizations:



Have you or a business you owned (or had principal interest in) ever filed bankruptcy? 



As an adult, have you been convicted or charged with a crime other than a minor traffic violation?




Web site: www.carolinebelleci.com

Email address:  cbelleci@gmail.com

Phone number: 253-389-9517

Campaign manager: N/A

Campaign manager contact information:        



Elected: N/A


Other campaigns for public office:




What is the primary reason you are running for this office?

I am running for city council because of my love for this city, my deep commitment to community service and my desire to make this community a strong and vibrant community to live and work. I will use my extensive community volunteer experience and knowledge of the community’s Comprehensive Plan to focus on moving the community and citizens of University Place forward by concentrating on Public Safety, Economic Development and ensuring a balanced budget to meet both community needs and debt obligations.


What will be your top three priorities if you get elected and why? 

Economic Development: To expand our local tax base to meet our debt obligations and fund essential community services, we must focus our attention on supporting our current businesses, attracting new businesses to University Place and providing jobs for our citizens. We must restore city government to a sound fiscal footing by ensuring that growth brings increased revenues to the city without impacting negatively on our single family neighborhoods. We must actively recruit businesses from all sectors, not just retail and facilitate opportunities for business to outreach to the community and prosper. Success in our business community ensures the ability to provide the services desired by our community.

Public Safety: Government’s number one priority is public safety. Police services must receive continued support through full funding. A safe community is what is attractive to both families and businesses. This ensures long range business success and the ability to grow our economic base through higher sales taxes collections and increased services to our citizens.

Infrastructure: Roads and parks improve the quality of life and property values of the community and priority must be given to maintaining existing facilities through creative means such as grants and effective partnerships.


What sets you apart from the other candidates and/or previous office holders? 

I have a very strong sense of community and my role as a public servant and volunteer. I have spent the past 17+ years volunteering for a variety of committees and commissions. This has provided me with the knowledge needed to interpret regulations, listen to citizens and be able to think long range and make decisions that will benefit the community as a whole.


City Council (Feb 2010 – Present)

  • Council representative to the Pierce County Regional Council
  • Reduced council salaries & benefits to add a Police Investigator to the police force
  • Ensured debt obligations are met and balanced the budget without further reduction in services to the community

City of University Place Planning Commission (1995 – 2010)

  • Worked with community to develop Comprehensive Plan to protect single family to comply with State mandated Growth Management Act
  • Developed the Zoning and Planning codes working in cooperation with citizens and business members

Other (County & State)

  • Pierce County - 1994-1996 – Chambers Bay Master Site Plan Committee resulting in the approved Master Site Plan
  • State of Washington - 2007 – 2010 – Appointed and served as Vice Chair of the Tacoma Narrows Citizens Advisory Committee and developed the policies and procedures for tolling on the Tacoma Narrows Bridge to ensure debt obligations are meet
  •  Member of the incorporation campaign

General Volunteer Activities

  • UP Festival, Tree Lighting, Cider Squeeze, Duck Parade, numerous other City activities
  • NJROTC Booster Club


How much money do you expect your campaign to spend on this election? 

As little as possible by being thoughtful and strategic with the campaign contributions I do receive.


Official endorsements: 

Pierce County Deputy Sheriff’s Independent Guild

And numerous community businesses and citizens

Mike Venuto August 03, 2011 at 03:51 PM
Howard Lee is a retired Captain in the US Navy. I think he would make a great addition to the City Council. I understand he has lived in UP for 30 years. I do not live in District 7 but have met with him and would recommend him.
Christie Anderson August 03, 2011 at 06:14 PM
Just as a reminder to anyone directly associated with council and staff, it is the annual "CHRISTMAS TREE" Lighting, not annual Tree Lighting...which was officially declared by council in 2007 with Resolution #572. It would be nice if that were honored.
Ernie Lackman August 03, 2011 at 08:10 PM
My wife and I, as well as several neighbors, are voting for Howard Lee.
Tad Saine August 04, 2011 at 01:45 AM
It's only August. Can we wait a few more months before we start up the mythical war on Christmas, please?
Christie Anderson August 04, 2011 at 01:53 AM
Mythical war? It was a resolution passed by council ....read it, then perhaps you'll see that it's not just a "seasonal" thing.
Cliff Quisenberry August 04, 2011 at 07:54 AM
Caroline's experience and commitment to the city is unequalled as a recent newcomer to the council and she is a thoughtful decision-maker, not just representing a political agenda. Howard seems like a nice person, but Caroline is the right choice as a leader to navigate us out of these economic waters.
Christie Anderson August 04, 2011 at 09:17 AM
Hey Cliff....aren't you now the chair of the planning commission?....you know, the position caroline vacated when she was promised and given the late Jean Brook's spot on the council? You and she must be good ole buddies, eh?
Cliff Quisenberry August 04, 2011 at 11:09 AM
Yes, Chris, I volunteer for and am the current chair of the planning commission. I do support Caroline based on an informed opinion of having worked with her on the commission, period.
Tad Saine August 04, 2011 at 02:27 PM
I have no doubt the resolution is real. It's the war on Christmas (sponsored in part by Faux News) that panders to the myth that we're a Christian nation I find absurd.
Don McDaniel August 04, 2011 at 07:00 PM
It appears to me of the two candidates for the position that Ms. Belleci has the best background for the position. She has been actively involved in the progress of the city since its founding.
Christie Anderson August 04, 2011 at 07:11 PM
Admittedly, her service as a volunteer in the city is extensive (perhaps too extensive??). However, it does not necessarily follow that she's the best choice for this position. This is beyond mere work/volunteer experience. It is also about where our city was, where we currently are and where we'll be going based on the choices we make for city council. I do not believe bellici is the best choice for where We need to be in the future as a city. In fact, I feel her choices and influence while serving on the planning commission are part of the reason We are where We are now; in deep financial trouble! It's time for some genuine "fresh eyes" and a "New Direction" and Howard Lee's the one who can provide that for position #7!
Jack August 05, 2011 at 02:09 AM
I have lived in U.P. for 22 years and have seen it go from unincorporated Pierce County to the great city that is is today. This is without-a-doubt thanks in part to the hard work and dedication of Ms. Belleci. Her qualifications are without equal and her vision for University Place is realistic and very community oriented. I will be telling all my friends and neighbors to vote for Ms. Belleci so we can keep U.P. moving forward!
Christie Anderson August 05, 2011 at 02:35 AM
Sometimes a person can be OVER qualified for a position....sometimes they are just too close to the projects to make the correct choices with taxpayer's money. It is time for a change, and while caroline is to be thanked for her volunteerism, it's time for "fresh eyes" and a "new direction"; one of fiscal responsibility and a return to UP's original incorporation vision. I'll be telling all my friends, neighbors, and anyone else who's tired of the status quo to vote for Howard Lee, so we can get UP back on track!
Cliff Quisenberry August 05, 2011 at 09:04 PM
I would chose overqualified versus less qualified or underqualified anyday, as would most rational people. If the veiled concern is that Caroline is somehow a political insider akin to a pilitician on Capitol Hill then that is not only farfetched but a ridiculous assertion. Caroline represents what is right with the local political process. If she is condidered status quo because she has spent countless hours volunteering to make this city a better place, taking action for change rather than simply complaining, then we should aspire to that type of status quo.
Christie Anderson August 05, 2011 at 09:21 PM
Sorry cliff, but your arguments for caroline just don't fly with me. When an unqualified nobody like eric choinier can not only win a council seat over someone with far more credentials than Caroline will ever have, just proves to me that your argument has no merit. His lack of experience was no impediment to him winning.
Cliff Quisenberry August 05, 2011 at 09:51 PM
I am not going to stoop to that level of denigrating others, but my argument is not that qualified candidates always win, unfortunately they often don't, but a qualified candidate like Caroline should win.
Christie Anderson August 06, 2011 at 03:02 AM
cliff...I could care less whether you feel I have denigrated someone, (if indeed I really have) when in actuality I merely spoke to his presence on the political scene; he came from out of nowhere. As to your assertion that "caroline represents what is right with the local political process" I don't see how that tracks. she was selected to replace the late Jean Brooks, and even THAT process was questionable. Others better suited to the postion were intentionally overlooked and she got the nod by the slimest of margins in the form of a political payback, IMHO. Suffice it to say, you feel caroline should be elected to council....I say it's Howard Lee who is best suited to serve as It's time for the "good old boys/girls" club to be retired along with the continued mistakes in judgemnt and let new voices to be heard.
Stephen August 07, 2011 at 08:05 AM
Tad, we are a Christian nation. To deny that is inaccurate and revisionist.
Stephen August 07, 2011 at 08:14 AM
Having spent a ton of money to build a brand new library over the hole where a brand new library once stood hardly seems like a qualification to me.
Christie Anderson August 08, 2011 at 03:29 AM
Thank you Stephen!
Christie Anderson October 20, 2011 at 07:03 PM
I have said this before and I'll say it again: As far as endorsements from the Tribune, it's kind of like reading their movie reviews; if it's a good review most likely it's one to either avoid or just wait for it to come out on video...and if it's a bad review, it'll probably be great! So I guess what I'm saying is, an endorsement of the Tribune, while it seems somewhat desirable, isn't everything. Some who have received glowing endorsements from them failed to be re-elected while those they did not endorse did. So, it just goes to show you, opinions are like .... well, you know ;-)


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