Ballots for local races coming your way

Expect to see ballots in your mail soon for the November general election. Edmonds voters will be asked to vote in three local races for City Council (all contested), two for school board (one seat contested, one unopposed) and municipal court judge (also an uncontested position). The top issue facing all City Council candidates is city finances, with a significant budget deficit looming.

We’ll start with a look at the candidates running for City Council, beginning today with Position 1:

Michael Plunkett, the incumbent, has lived in Edmonds for 30 years and spent the past 12 years on the Edmonds City Council, serving as Council president in 2004 and 2008. During his tenure, he has:

  • Created the Edmonds Historic Preservation Commission.
  • Voted to save Marina Beach Park from development and to preserve open space at Old Mill Town.
  • Saved the paramedic system by voting to move paramedics into the Edmonds Fire Department, and recently voting against cuts to the city’s police force.
  • Voted to allow the Lake Ballinger neighborhood to have a say in Highway 99 development.
  • Led the effort to stop loud motorized scooters in neighborhoods.
  • Voted for an 11-acre park in South Edmonds, sidewalks in North Edmonds, and for better stewardship of Lake Ballinger.

A real estate agent, Plunkett has been endorsed by the Edmonds Firefighters Local 1828.

Priya Cloutier, his opponent, is an Edmonds attorney who serves on the board of the Sno-King Economic Development Project and the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce. She also helped establish the College Place Middle School Music Boosters and coordinates the Edmonds 4th of July Main Parade. She and her husband Todd have two sons.

If elected, her priorities for Edmonds include:

  • Planned and sustainable economic growth.
  • Balancing the City budget for the long term.
  • Public transportation.
  • Maintaining the charm of Edmonds.

She has been endorsed by the Edmonds Police Association, the Joint Council of Teamsters, the Progressive Majority and the Everett Herald. Additional endorsements can be found on her website:

There’s been a fair amount of rhetoric in this race, with Plunkett claiming that Cloutier has missed voting in some important local elections and Cloutier stating on her Facebook page that Plunkett is afraid to debate her.

So here’s your chance to sound off on the candidate you are supporting for position 1, and why. Remember, healthy debate and expression of opinion is the foundation of our democracy!

  1. I think there should be some information on what Priya has already accomplished for the City of Edmonds, including:

    -organizing and coordinating the 4th of July Parade for the Edmonds community, and

    -fighting to raise thousands of dollars to save Yost Pool while Mr Plunkett failed to come up with any proactive solutions to address the problem (he wanted to cop out and use the City’s emergency funds rather than be a leader and do some actual work).

    Obviously the list of her accomplishment for Edmonds goes on and on.

    In addition, I can’t wait to see you on the council with Priya, Diane! Good luck!

  2. Very well done, Teresa – your use of the candidates’ own statements made for a clear presentation of their respective positions.

    By the way, the Edmonds Rotary Daybreakers had a debate this morning (Tuesday, 10/27) for the Position 1 candidates. However, Mr. Plunkett decided not to show up. Hardly a hostile audience!

    I was wondering, though, when any of the local journalistic outlets was going to take on exposing corruption and undue influence. Such as the September 18, 2008 Council Meeting, where Mr.Plunkett made a back-room deal with a developer (and contributor) to force an Edmonds resident to provide an easement across his lawn for the developer’s new property, even though there was an existing driveway the developer could have used. That was illegal, and we (the City of Edmonds) are open to a lawsuit because of it. And we’ll lose.

    Or perhaps investigate Mr. Plunkett’s pound-the-table opposition to building heights (which was settled into City Code in 2005, but he still strikes fear into the heart of “the Bowl people” when he mentions it), while he also emails other Council members about how he needs to be shown why the code should apply to his developer contributor, when the developer decides to violate the code and block views?

    We rely on our local journalists to break stories like this, and to hold our elected officials accountable. That’s the real reason for a free press!

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