Well, having never before announced I would not run for a third term as Mayor, I wasn’t sure what the community reaction would be. As you can imagine, reactions were varied (and some predictable). Many very kind words from all across the city along with other folks being disappointed with me stepping aside. (Oh yes, and I’m sure there are some folks cheering!)
Coming to the decision not to run again was lengthy and difficult. About 2 1/2 years into my 2nd term, I began to ponder the decision. First off, know I love the job! It is so rewarding having the opportunity to work with a quality staff, our superb community and my many contacts and friends at the local, county, state and federal level. The contacts made with years of work before becoming mayor have borne fruit for the city and the region. Most other elected officials would acknowledge strong, personal and longstanding relationships are a basic key and necessity for success. There have been challenges, yes, but disappointments, few.
As any of the previous mayors will tell you, this is a tough and complex job. Managing a staff of around 240, being confident our approximately $44 million general fund and combined funds of over $100 million are secure, keeping in communication with you, the public, and staying in step with my outside responsibilities such as Sound Transit, Economic Alliance of Snohomish County and Community Transit means my days and evenings are full.
Certainly one of the biggest challenges and rewards I have faced is bringing Edmonds’ financial position back. Yes, the economy coming back from the ugly 2008 recession certainly helped, but working along with staff and the council since 2011 we find ourselves with strong reserves and a healthy, strong revenue stream.
As a result of our improved financial position and some creative decisions by the Council, Directors and staff, along with a lot of hard work the past seven years, we have pieced together a community with a renewed vibrancy and energy. I must tell you, I am amazed daily and excited for Edmonds’ future. We certainly are not DEADMONDS ANYMORE!
Remember, even though I announced my decision not to run again early, I still have 10 months in my current term. During that time we have an ambitious agenda ahead of us and as far as the staff and I are concerned, it’s “full speed ahead”!
In closing, even though I will have other opportunities along the way to say so, it has been a true honor and privilege to serve this community as mayor. Thank you for that. Developing the instrumental music program at Shoreline Community College, having a strong family and representing Edmonds, are my true points of pride
By Dave Earling, Mayor of Edmonds