Franz won't seek a second council term

Councilor Hilary Franz will not seek re-election for City Council. - Courtesy Photo
Councilor Hilary Franz will not seek re-election for City Council.
— image credit: Courtesy Photo

Councilor Hilary Franz won't seek re-election to the Bainbridge Island City Council, but is undecided about what she'll do next.

Franz, an attorney, is currently juggling a decision on whether to pursue one of two employment opportunities or to seek an appointment to replace State Sen. Phil Rockefeller, whose resignation is effective June 30.

Franz said it is too early in the political process to make a decision on whether she will seek Rockefeller's spot or another political office. She said it's a decision she is still weighing with her family, and will also depend on her job opportunities.

Sen. Rockefeller, D-23rd District and an island resident, announced last week that he will be leave his Senate position early after being appointed by Gov. Chris Gregoire as a new member of the Northwest Power and Conservation Council. Rockefeller had served three two-year terms in the 23rd district and his current term will expires at the end of 2012.

State Rep. Christine Rolfes subsequently announced that she will seek the appointment to replace Rockefeller; her term in the House also expires in 2012. The Kitsap County Democratic Central Committee will chose three candidates, one of whom will be chosen by the Board of County Commissioners to replace Rockefeller.

Franz has served as a North Ward representative since being elected in 2008 and said she will miss her time on council.

"We have had to work through a number of challenges over the last four years, with the recession, a form of government change, land use codes, and failing infrastructure," said Franz. "I feel strong that with the collaborative work of the council over the last few years and with strong leadership in our city administration, our city is well positioned to serve our community more efficiently and effectively."

While on council Franz has dedicated much of her work to preserving the liveaboard community that was facing eviction from Eagle Harbor over a longstanding dispute with the state Department of Natural Resources.

She is currently in the midst of leading the three-year RePower Bainbridge initiative.

"There is still a lot of work to do," Franz said. "I am hopeful new citizens will come forward to run for council and to work with our community to help move forward on critical issues that need addressing to ensure a strong sustainable future for our island."

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