Opinion

Opportunity here for downtown voice

The recent resignation of Jay Rodne has left a vacant seat on the Snoqualmie City Council. The four remaining council members will select our newest member from a list of applicants.

Since four of the five council seats are presently held by folks living in the Ridge area of town, it would be reasonable for the council to select a candidate from the historic downtown area of Snoqualmie. The council gains the historical knowledge and perspective the downtown resident will bring, and the city as a whole gains by having diverse representation and a mix of viewpoints brought to the table.

Our newest council members, Nate Short and Jeff McNichols, aware of the many issues resulting from the city's tremendous growth in population, have expressed the importance of having historic Snoqualmie representation on council.

The council is expected to appoint two new members by the end of 2004 as we are required by law to have a seven-member council when the city's population reaches 5,000. However, the recent turn of events offers the opportunity for three council appointments this year. When making these appointments, I encourage council members to consider the benefits of a council that is representative of the people, and a town that is supportive of its council. There are well-informed, knowledgeable candidates from downtown who can bring their experience, and that of of their neighbors, to the council table.

This is not a new issue. The idea of districting or creating wards in Snoqualmie has been discussed by past city councils and will be brought up again. That process is lengthy and costly and whether it is necessary or needed here remains to be seen. If Snoqualmie Ridge II is approved and developed, we will almost certainly be talking about it again.

Council members should represent all residents. However, we each like to think our own concerns will be brought to the attention of decision-makers, and a representative who has experienced them best does that. We can mediate the districting discussion by simply ensuring citywide representation on council, and the present council can facilitate this by ensuring that downtown residents have a voice.

Please, call or write your council members and request downtown representation on our council. Candidates for Position No. 5 have until Feb. 13, 2004, to submit their applications, and council will appoint in March. Candidate names will be made public and we can take the opportunity to endorse a specific candidate if we like. Council needs to hear your voice.


Marcia Korich

Snoqualmie

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