Baseball season has started, the flowers are out and occasionally so is the sun. Our dispositions are better and we celebrate that special person in our lives, our mothers. That means it’s May!
Besides making sure I never forget my mother, I knew it had to be May because someone reminded me it was “Civility Month.”
Well that explained a lot. A couple of elected officials greeted me nicely and a couple of others kept their growl at a minimum.
I knew next month couldn’t be Civility Month because that’s June, and filing for public office occurs. When the election season gets under way, civility tends to go on vacation for a while. Hopefully the races here will be civil and all the candidates will extend the warmth of May throughout the remainder of the year.
But that may not be the case in all communities. Over in Bellevue, they have already had a difficult year. Bellevue has a council-manager form of government and has always had some of the more talented council members and staff. The council has had its disagreements, but they have usually been handled quietly. Lately? Not so much. They were already split 4-3 on most issues, but then things turned really awkward. One councilman was accused of conflict of interest between his private business and his public position, and the city attorney was hiring outside counsel to investigate.
Then in what some thought was a tactical move, the council member’s supporters suggested that two other council members should be included in the investigation at the same time. With people on both sides challenged and the rest of the council divided, who gets to vote on whether to pursue the investigation?
Looking for election fun? Follow Bellevue this year.
If Bellevue is too far away, you can look next door in Auburn. Two incumbents, Sue Singer and Lynn Norman, are not running again. Largo Wales and Wayne Osborne will run to replace them. If they draw challengers, it could get interesting.
But the real excitement is in position 5, where incumbent Virginia Haugen won in an upset four years ago and has been a lighting rod for controversy ever since. Her less than diplomatic style has ruffled a lot of feathers. She ran against the incumbent for mayor two years ago. And though she lost by a large margin, her numbers were better than most predicted and she did spice things up a bit. She also got in trouble with the law for getting involved in a political prank. Recently, the council censured her.
Her opponent will be John Hays Holman. He and his family are well known and well respected in Auburn. Holman will start off as the front-runner. An unusual place for a challenger.
Then here in Federal Way, Susan Honda has joined Roger Flygare to challenge incumbent Michael Park. Park was expected to announce by the end of April, and his silence has people asking questions about whether he will actually run.
All of that starts next month. This month, be nice to Mom and remember it is Civility Month.