Proposed process to find Dow Constantine’s successor on the County Council

He’s currently the County Councilmember representing District 8 – White Center, West Seattle, Vashon and other areas – so when Dow Constantine is sworn in as King County Executive in 2 1/2 weeks, how will his successor be chosen? A proposed process was unveiled this afternoon – here’s the county announcement:

With Tuesday’s election of Council Chair Dow Constantine as King County Executive, the Metropolitan King County Council may consider legislation Monday establishing a process for evaluating candidates for appointment to succeed him in representing Council District 8.

“It is important that the Council act quickly to ensure representation for constituents in District 8,” said Council Vice Chair Bob Ferguson. “Timely appointment will also allow the new councilmember to transition into the position, hire staff, and hit the ground running in the new year.”

A proposed motion introduced today would create a 10-member panel of community leaders and elected officials who live or work in Council District 8, and who represent the geographic, economic and ethnic diversity of the district that encompasses West Seattle, North Highline, Vashon/Maury Islands, Burien, Normandy Park, SoDo, the International District/Chinatown, Pioneer Square, East Beacon Hill, and portions of the cities of SeaTac and Tukwila.

As currently drafted, the proposed legislation calls for applicants for the position to submit application material to the Clerk of the Council by Monday, November 16.

The selection committee is proposed to meet no later than November 25 to interview qualified applicants and recommend two to five candidates for consideration by the Council, but not state any preferences among the recommended candidates.

The King County Council has final authority for making the appointment. Under the proposal, the Council’s Committee of the Whole would interview recommended candidates on Monday, November 30, with final Council action on an appointment no later than December 14. The appointee would serve in office until certification of the next general election in November 2010.

The proposed process is similar to that adopted earlier this year to fill vacancies in the offices of County Executive and County Assessor. Under the old partisan form of government, the political party of the official vacating office would submit nominees for an appointed successor, but voters last year amended the King County Charter to make most countywide offices non-partisan.

The proposed legislation establishes criteria to be used by the selection committee in evaluating the qualifications of eligible candidates, including:

· Knowledge of the functions of King County government;
· Knowledge of the issues and challenges facing King County government;
· Knowledge of the issues affecting the constituents of Council District 8;
· A demonstrated ability to develop a responsible budget;
· A demonstrated ability to respond to public concerns;
· Demonstrated leadership skills; and
· A commitment to the immediate business of King County that would make it unlikely that the individual would run for any elective office while serving as appointed councilmember.

Council Chair Constantine is scheduled to be sworn into office as King County Executive as soon as the results of the general election are certified on November 24.

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3 Responses to “Proposed process to find Dow Constantine’s successor on the County Council”

  1. I believe that Greg Nickels should be appointed to the King County Council’s district #8. He will be available Jan. 2, 2010, (or sooner, if needed), lives in the district, once was the eighth district’s representative to the county councils, and he knows the ropes of the county’s dealings so no “on the job” training would be required.
    He would do a GREAT job.

  2. If a city rejected him, why on earth would our County want or need him, that a sign. He is better off retired and out of the political scene, and that is exactly where he belongs.

  3. I was disappointed with Nickels performance when he was our 8 th Dist. councilman. I agree with Sara comments