Central Ward residents who want to serve on the Bainbridge Island City Council will have until April 20 to apply for the post, according to a suggested timeline for filling the council seat left vacant by the resignation of Councilman Mike Scott.
Scott announced his resignation last week. He is stepping down from his first elected term on the council to become a King County Superior Court judge. Governor Jay Inslee announced Scott’s appointment to the bench last Tuesday, and the appointment takes effect in April.
The Bainbridge council is expected to review the process for replacing Scott at its meeting this week, and should council members give the green light, the council vacancy will be posted on Monday, April 2.
Islanders interested in serving in the Central Ward, Position 4 seat will have until 4 p.m. Friday, April 20 to submit an application to the city clerk.
The city council is tentatively planning to interview candidates for the position during a special city council meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday, April 26.
While interviews of the candidates would be made in an open public session, the council can retreat to an executive session that’s closed to the public to discuss the qualifications of the candidates.
A vote to pick a new council member would be made in open session, however, and according to the proposed timeline for replacing Scott, an appointment would be made at the close of that special meeting on April 26.
The new council member would be sworn in at the meeting on Tuesday, May 1.
Candidates for the council seat must be a resident of Bainbridge Island for one year prior to April 16. Candidates must also be a Central Ward resident, and a registered voter.
Application packets should include a completed application, a one-page cover letter, a resume (up to two pages), and answers to seven questions that are contained in the application form.
The questions are:
• Why are you interested in serving as a Bainbridge Island City Council member?
• What strength would you bring to the council?
• What are the three highest priorities and/or issues you believe the city needs to address? How would you propose to address these issues?
• Explain your current and past community involvement and/or service on city, nonprofit, or public boards, committees, task forces, or commissions and how this has contributed to the Bainbridge Island community. Address its relevance to the position of Bainbridge Island City Council member.
• What do you wish to accomplish during this appointed term as Bainbridge Island City Council member?
• What is your vision for our city and community?
• Is there anything else that you may wish to add that would help us get to know you a little better?
Council members will also ask the following questions at the candidate interview meeting on April 26:
• Are there any regional issues or forums in which you have a particular interest or expertise? (e.g. transportation, water supply, human services, water quality, fiscal management, solid waste, etc.); and
• Do you want to serve on the city council because of a particular local issue on which you want to work or are your interests more broadly distributed?
City officials note that council members are expected to devote roughly 18 to 20 hours per month to the position. Council members are paid a monthly salary of $1,200.
The unexpected council vacancy is its first since December 2014.
Scott joined the council as an appointment member in January 2015. He was selected to fill the position left vacant by the resignation of David Ward, who quit his council post in December as part of a settlement agreement that ended a public records lawsuit against the city over council member emails.
That vacancy originally drew five other candidates in addition to Scott; Monica Aufrecht, Joe Levan, Gary Pettersen, John Green and Greg Millerd. (Levan joined city staff last summer when he was hired as city attorney.)
Scott ran unopposed to retain his council seat and was elected to the council for a four-year term in November 2015.
Scott is a longtime trial attorney, and his appointment as judge will fill the position vacated by King County Superior Court Judge Jeffrey Ramsdell, who is retiring.