Charter panel to discuss possible changes

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Peninsula News Network

Clallam County, WA - Now that the public has had it’s say, it’s up to the 15 members of the Clallam County Charter Review Commission to decide what ideas might find their way to this fall’s ballot.

The panel has been reviewing the county’s “constitution” since the first of the year and wrapped up the third of three countywide hearings in Forks this past week.

The panel has been gathering input on several possible Charter amendments. But the ones getting the most attention deal with the future status of the Department of Community Development Director and the frequency of future charter reviews.

The idea of switching back to an appointed, rather than an elected DCD director has been a key focus for this panel, which is conducting the first charter review since viewers made the office an elective one four years ago.

The commission has also been discussing other concepts, such as how to address the question of independent candidates. That’s been an issue for past Charter commissions, ever since Evan Jones won the East End commissioners’ race as an independent candidate in 1983. The question is getting new attention now because of the state’s switch to “party preference” Primary elections.

The commission is now facing deadlines to decide which amendments should go to the voters in November. However, the panel does have the option of sending additional amendments to the ballot in 2008, since the commissioners’ terms run through the end of this year.


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