Evan Smith: Dwight Thompson is first candidate for LFP mayor

Friday, April 22, 2011

By Evan Smith
ShorelineAreaNews Politics Writer

Lake Forest Park City Councilman Dwight Thompson is the first candidate for LFP mayor.

Thompson, the City’s deputy mayor, registered with the State Public Disclosure Commission Tuesday, a step that allows him to raise and spend money for the August 16 primary and November 8 general election.

Thompson confirmed his plans to run in a Thursday e-mail.

He will seek the position that Mayor Dave Hutchison is giving up after four terms.
No other candidates have registered their intent to run.

Candidates file for ballot positions June 6-10.

Before Thompson’s announcement, Councilman Don Fiene had told me that he was considering a run for mayor but would wait until closer to filing time.

Unlike Thompson, Fiene would not have to give up his Council seat to run. He is in the middle of a four-year term that expires in 2013. Thompson’s Council term expires at the end of this year.

Councilman John Wright and Councilwoman Sandy Koppenol both told me early this week that they had no plans to run.

If three or more candidates file, the office will appear on the primary ballot Otherwise, it will appear only in November.

7 comments:

Anonymous,  April 22, 2011 at 5:12 PM  

Make sure you don't call Dwight Mayor Pro Tem... he gets really unhappy. I mean, after all, he did promote changing his title in preparation for running for the big office. What a forward thinking guy!

Anonymous,  April 22, 2011 at 10:44 PM  

It's not clear to me why LFP needs an elected mayor. Numerous towns (Shoreline, Kenmore, Kirkland, Bellevue, etc.) make-do with Council-Manager style governments - why can't LFP? I'd rather see the $35+K/yr we pay for this position go for something else.

Evan Smith,  April 23, 2011 at 4:04 AM  

State law gives cities a choice of forms of government. Lake Forest Park has chosen the mayor-council form, as have Edmonds. Lynnwood, Brier, Woodway. Mukilteo.
Shoreline. Kenmore. Mountlake Terrace, Mill Creek etc. have chosen the council-manager from.
A third form of city government -- the commission form -- was once common in Washington. Portland still uses i.

Evan Smith,  April 23, 2011 at 4:22 AM  

Dwight Thompson had the title ",mayor pro tem" before the Council voted to change the title to "deputy mayor" when it reorganized after the last election. Edmonds and Lynnwood use the term "Council president." Under any of the three titles, its the person who presides over the Council in the mayor's absence.

Evan Smith,  April 23, 2011 at 4:52 AM  

State law gives cities a choice of forms of government. Lake Forest Park has chosen the mayor-council form, as have Edmonds. Lynnwood, Brier, Woodway. Mukilteo.
Shoreline. Kenmore. Mountlake Terrace, Mill Creek etc. have chosen the council-manager form.
A third form of city government -- the commission form -- was once common in Washington. Portland still uses it.

Anonymous,  April 23, 2011 at 7:40 AM  

Notice that I said "needs", not "has" - I'm aware of why we have a Council-Mayor form of government; I'm just not sure why we need that form.

RCW 35.18.240 allows cities to reorganize as a Council-Manager form of government - maybe it's time for LFP to consider this?

Evan Smith,  April 23, 2011 at 2:39 PM  

I talked to someone in LFP about the issue several years ago. The response was that having an independently elected executive and independently elected legislative authority is the American way because that's what we do at the state and federal levels of government.
There have been movements in both Edmonds and Lynnwood over the last year or two to switch from mayor-council to council-manager.
Federal Way, on the other hand, switched from council-manager to mayor-council a couple of years ago.

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