Editorial: City Council, Budget Committee vacancies provide excellent opportunities to serve

January 4, 2012

The new year brings new vistas, and that means at least one change at Hood River City Hall.

Ann Frodel's departure from City Council creates just such a new opportunity.

Frodel had to step down from council as she recently moved outside of city limits. Between her service on council and her tireless efforts to create and sustain the Hood River Waterfront Park, Frodel deserves the thanks of the community. This was made manifest in the key to the city, presented to her last month by Mayor Arthur Babitz (photo, Dec. 31).

But shoes to be filled are shoes to be filled, and now Hood River residents are being asked to consider lacing up.

The council was correct in deciding to open up the application process anew. Planning Commission member Kate McBride, who was a recent applicant for the council seat vacated by Dawna Armstrong in September, had notified City Administrator Bob Francis of her interest in being considered for Frodel's seat. A fresh start on the selection process will not include newly appointed councilor Ed Weathers in selecting an appointee, and, with hope, yield a new field of candidates who might be inspired to take up where Frodel left off.

Now is the time to consider seeking an appointment to City Council. Applications from residents within the city limits are now being taken and are due Jan. 6 by noon. Interviews will be scheduled for the evening of Jan. 9.

Or, if you would like to serve but aren't sure about taking on the commitment of being on council, consider the four open positions on the City Budget Committee.

The committee meets approximately weekly from April until the budget passes in late June. The candidates must be residents within the city and terms last three years.

For further details on either opportunity, residents may contact City Recorder Jennifer Gray at 541-387-5212. Citizens may log onto the city's website at http://ci.hood-river.or.us/ to download the one-page application. Click the button on the main page listed as "City Council Vacancy."

Serving on the city council or budget committee both certainly provide the opportunity to make a difference in your community, but anyone interested needs to decide soon. If you are a city resident and have ever considered getting into public service, this is the time to take that step.

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