Editorial — Get ready for elections

April 30, 2015

By Staff

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If you’ve been thinking about taking on an important leadership role within the city of Newcastle, the time has come to take the next step. Candidates must file for election by May 15.

The terms for four Newcastle City Council positions are set to expire at the end of the year — council position No. 1 (Lisa Jensen), council position No. 2 (Carol Simpson), council position No. 3 (Steve Buri) and council position No. 4 (Gordon Bisset).

Simpson and Bisset already announced they would file for re-election, while Jensen said she will not and Buri is still undecided.

Meanwhile, Newcastle Community Activities commissioners Linda Newing and Victoria Sandoval and as well as Planning Commissioner Allen Dauterman announced they will run for a City Council spot.

Additionally, the term of Coal Creek Utility District’s commissioner position No. 3, currently held by Douglas Kunkel, is set to expire at the end of the year.

Elected office is the ultimate volunteer job. While Newcastle City Council positions come with a $500-a-month salary, $600 if you’re the mayor, it is nominal — far less than minimum wage. All council positions are considered part time, and council members often have employment apart from the city.

It’s not a job for the faint of heart. Candidates must be passionate about their community and willing to dedicate the next four years to the city, if elected.

The idea of running a campaign may seem intimidating, especially against incumbents, but the community really is best served when every position has challengers.

Prospective candidates can file in-person at the King County Elections Office in Renton or online beginning May 11 until May 15. The deadline to withdraw is May 18.

Candidates must be registered voters at the time of filing and have at least one year of Newcastle residency on Election Day, according to state law. Candidates should also possess a willingness to dedicate several hours to numerous meetings and a strong resolve to serve the city and its residents.

Learn more about filing for the upcoming election at www.kingcounty.gov/elections.

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