On the Mayor's Mind - from the new Shoreline mayor

Monday, January 18, 2016

Shoreline Mayor Chris Roberts
By Shoreline Mayor Chris Roberts

Two years ago, Mayor Shari Winstead began writing a “semi-monthly article where she shares her thoughts and ideas on being Mayor of the Great City of Shoreline!” As the newly elected Mayor of Shoreline, I seek to continue the positive work done by previous councils and previous mayors to improve our community.

On Monday, January 4th, my colleagues on the Council selected me to serve as Mayor for the next two years. I am honored by their confidence in my ability to serve in this role.

The people of Shoreline elected me to the City Council in 2009 and again in 2013. I currently represent the City on the Association of Washington Cities Legislative Committee and the Sound Cities Association Public Issues Committee. I also serve as an alternate on the Puget Sound Regional Council’s Growth Management Policy Board. My wife, Heather, our son, Clark, and I live in the Meridian Park neighborhood.

In Shoreline, the role of mayor is primarily ceremonial. The mayor presides over Council meetings and represents the City at ceremonial functions and inter-governmental meetings. As mayor, I make appointments to regional committees when Shoreline is assigned a representative and work with the Deputy Mayor to set the Council’s agenda. In this way, the mayor of Shoreline is more akin to a council president or presiding officer of a legislative body than an elected mayor like Seattle’s Ed Murray, Lake Forest Park’s Jeff Johnson, or New York City’s Bill DeBlasio.

Shoreline’s form of government is far from unique, even if more people might be more familiar with an elected or executive mayor system. In Washington, 53 cities (or 18%), and nationwide, nearly 50%, of all cities utilize the council-manager form of government. The idea behind the council-manager form of government was to separate the roles of policy-making (which is done by an elected Council) from the professional implementation or administration of those policies.

As mayor, I will continue listening to your concerns and solutions for how we can make Shoreline a better place to work, live, and play. You can always reach me through my email.


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