The seven city councilors are scheduled to return their “Interview Ballots” by Wednesday, November 23. Click here to view the “ballot”.
Continuing in their pattern, City staff have done nothing to inform Ward 7 voters about how this “voting” procedure works or the results. Here is the explanation:
* The “Interview Ballot” lists the names of ten applicants, including ones that the staff have implied to councilors may not meet the city residency requirement.
* Each councilor is requested to submit a ballot on which they indicate one or more applicants they wish to interview. Submitting a ballot isn’t mandatory, and there is no limit to how many applicants a councilor may list to be interviewed.
* To be interviewed, an applicant must be selected on at least four ballots.
* Those applicants who get four votes are contacted and invited for interviews.
* Prior to the interview, each councilor can provide one question which will be asked during the interview.
* During the final process to nominate applicants and vote on appointment, councilors can nominate and/or vote for any applicant whether or not the applicant was interviewed.
Note that there’s an implicit prejudice against applicants for whom the city staff have not yet resolved the residency issue. The appropriate response by councilors would be to ignore any uncertainty about an applicant’s residency when deciding whether they wish “vote” to interview a candidate.
Regardless of the procedural technicalities, the voting on which candidates to interview is effectively a “first cut” of applicants. An applicant who doesn’t get interviewed is almost certain to be eliminated from being appointed, based on nothing more than the application questions that city staff recommended, none of which related to specific Ward 7 issues, such as EmX, the Willamette River Greenway, etc. The City Council should have allowed Ward 7 voters to at least submit suggestions for questions to be on the application
That’s were Ward 7 Neighbors United is filling the gap in Ward 7 citizen engagement. Here are actions citizens can take:
Click here to view the list of applicants with links to their applications.
Click here to view questions from Ward 7 voters and applicants’ responses (or lack of responses).
Click here to add your name to the Petition to City council for a transparent process and a decision that represents Ward 7 voters views.
Click here for instructions to express your views to the city councilors.