Not so fast, we say | IN OUR OPINION

We’re willing to set aside the great debate about the needed divide between religion and government right now for a timely prayer.

Our prayer is one for patience.

Douglas Schulze will take over as Bainbridge Island’s new city manager next month, and his first day on the job is Nov. 5.

While our attention will obviously be elsewhere in that first week of November, let’s hope that the city’s new top executive will get time during his first weeks on the job to learn more about the city, its citizens and our community before he is subject to the from-all-sides onslaught of demands that have enveloped previous leaders at city hall.

What we are hoping for, yes, praying for, is a bit of a longer honeymoon for a city manager in a place that seems notoriously famous for rapid results from its city leaders.

In his initial plan for assuming his new role, Schulze wisely said that he would need time to rebuild the way city hall operates. As he said, that will come only after several months of listening and learning.

Schulze has also rightly noted that the first 30 days will be critical to his administration, and on that, we again agree.

A tone of trust is needed at city hall, between elected officials and city hall employees, and at the dais itself. City officials must also learn to trust the form of government they are operating within, and accept that many decisions on the day-to-day running of city hall are beyond their legislative realm.

While some see pressing issues that need instant answers — Who will be the next police chief? What’s to be done with the city’s water utility? — these are things that need not be resolved within the next few months.

The city has the benefit of time on these major matters. Let’s allow the new manager to have some of it.


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