I attended the debate last night at the Edmonds Senior Center and imagine my surprise to hear many the Edmonds Election Group candidates’ themes of current council not getting along with each other and being unable to get anything done but infighting.
They are mistaken on that theme.
I’m here to tell you that democracy isn’t alway clean and neat, sometimes it’s down right messy. At least you know the issues are being debated publicly, that council has studied the issues and has truly taken a stand on what they believe is the best thing for our 40,000 citizens. If we always agreed on the same issues you would have to know that we were either meeting behind the scenes to come to agreement or some weren’t paying attention and voted the way they were told too by others. Also keep in mind our job isn’t to agree with everything we are told by staff; if we did, then why do we need a council? We are elected to determine if it’s in the best interests of the citizens.
You just need to look at Congress or at our State House and Senate to understand.
Could the Edmonds City Council use a more polite and less dramatic approach at meetings? Sure, we all agree the tone needs to change. But It’s very easy to sit in that armchair and criticize what you’re seeing on TV but it’s another thing to stick you neck out and try and make a difference in our city. Passion tends to bring out many emotions in all of us.
Finally, I’d like to address the continual campaign rhetoric we all continue to hear and be offended by………… “we can’t get anything done”
Let’s go over a few things we have got done in the last four years or so: Pay careful attention, candidates, because you will be expected to work harder to ensure more is done, after all “the current council can’t get anything done”
We have as EXAMPLE:
Established Business Improve District – now called Edmonds Downtown Alliance or ED!
Completed the 5 Corners Roundabout project
Approved updating of Personnel Policies (badly outdated)
Amended Code re Downtown BD Zones (Ord. 3918)
Ord. 3921 – Allow public markets in BC, BD & CG zones
Ord. 3934 Adopt Park Impact Fees
Adopted 2013 Comp Sewer Plan
Adopted CFP Element of Comp Plan
Adopted Recreational Marijuana Zone Regs and adopted review process for State-issued recreational licenses
Adopted Westgate Mixed Use Zone District
Updated 2015 Comp Plan
Approved the main street projects
Approved City park upgrades including spray pad
Working on the critical areas ordinances
Approved multiple labor agreements including change to medical insurance to be more competitive with market.
Approved code of conduct
Approved the veterans memorial concept
Adopted the cities investment policy
Adoption of new senior center
Changed the zoning along Highway 99 to ensure development
All and all this council has completed more in the past four years than any council has done in 20 years. Although it appears we struggle at times to approve items, it’s only because the current council believes they are doing the best thing for the citizens by getting all the information needed and making a thoughtful decisions.
So candidates, I would suggest you quit suggesting that nothing is getting done on council because some of you may be on the other end of this stick shortly and unable to be that armchair quarterback but the policy maker.
Edmonds City Council, President