Steering Committee recommendations to City Councilors

Subject: Recommendations from Ward 7 Neighbors United Steering Committee
Date: Nov 21 2022, at 10:14 am

Dear City Councilors,

This message is from the volunteer Steering Committee for Ward 7 Neighbors United.

All three of us are Ward 7 voters, and we live in three different Ward 7 neighborhoods (Whiteaker, River Road, and Santa Clara).

The goal of Ward 7 Neighbors United is to provide Ward 7 voters with information from and about the applicants for Interim Ward 7 City Councilor. We are not doing any rating, straw polls, or recommendations.

However, we do have shared views on the city process and would like to make the following recommendations:

1. In deciding which applicants to select for interviews, we recommend that councilors make their selections without prejudice to any applicant for whom the city staff has not yet made a final determination regarding whether the applicant meets the city residency criterion.

2. We suggest you review the applicants’ responses (or lack of response) to questions based on Ward 7 voters’ specific interests. The questions and tables of responses are posted at:

3. We recommend that the City Council direct the City Manager to provide more complete and timely communications to the public, including specifically:

  • Staff memos to the City Council, including the “Interview Ballot” 
  • The marked ballots submitted by city councilors
  • Timely determination of any applicant(s) that is/are disqualified
  • Communications (i.e., emails and letters) to city councilors supporting or opposing applicants

Most importantly, we urge the city to mail a postcard to every Ward 7 voter with the list of candidates, where to get information on the candidates and process, and how to submit comments to city councilors.
More than fifty citizens have signed the Petition to City Council urging a more transparent process.
As residents in different areas of Ward 7, our experience has been that most voters do not have much, if any, knowledge of the appointment process or applicants. We have also heard significant concerns that this lack of communication is one more example of the city ignoring voters in a critical decision.

Thank you for your consideration. We would welcome responses from any councilor(s) that we can share with Ward 7 voters.


Volunteer Steering Committee
Lawrence Siskind
Patti Swinehart
Jordan Locke

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