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City of Black Diamond
Proposition No. 1
Change in the Plan of Government

The City of Black Diamond currently operates as a Mayor-Council plan of government under the provisions of RCW Chapter 35A.12 with an elected mayor as chief executive. Shall the City of Black Diamond abandon its present Mayor-Council plan of government and adopt in its place the Council-Manager plan of government under the provisions of RCW Chapter 35A.13 with an appointed city manager as chief executive?



Changing the current plan of government from a Mayor-Council plan of government under the provisions of RCW Chapter 35A.12 to a Council-Manager plan of government under the provisions of RCW Chapter 35A.13. If Proposition 1 is approved, the current Mayor-Council plan of government will be abandoned and reorganized as a Council-Manager plan of government. Under the Council-Manager plan of government, the Mayor would no longer be elected and instead would be appointed from among the members of the City Council to serve as the ceremonial head of the City with no administrative duties. The current Mayor would serve out the remainder of his or her term as an additional Council Member and this additional council position would terminate at the conclusion of his or her term. Current Council Members would also serve out the remainder of their terms. The City Council will retain the same powers as granted to the City Council under a Mayor-Council form of government, with the exception of those powers reserved to the City Manager. The City Council would be required to appoint a qualified person to be City Manager as the chief executive officer of the City and head of the administrative branch of the city government. The City Manager would be responsible to the City Council for the proper administration of all affairs of the City. The reorganization would also result in an increase in the size of the City Council from five members to seven members.

It is a democratic right of citizens to choose the way their City is governed.  The existing form of government has created gridlock.  Residents of Black Diamond voted for a new direction by an overwhelming majority in 2011.  The newly elected City Council has been frustrated by a city government which ignores the wishes of our citizens.  The Council-Manager government provides strong political leadership from the Council balanced with a professional city manager, who reports to the City Council, and is responsible for daily operations of city government.  Decisions on policy and the city’s future are made by the entire council, not one individual.  Costs decrease because the city is run in a business-like manner, with lower operating costs and increased productivity.  The Council-Manager form of government responds more reliably to the public.  Black Diamond faces the challenge of land development that would threaten our quality of life, drive up our taxes and degrade our environment.  Join us as we complete the job the voters started last year.  This is our opportunity to reform City Hall and protect our unique community.  Vote YES.

Keep your right to vote for mayor. The mayor is elected by and represents all the citizens of Black Diamond and has done so in our city for over 50 years. Our current mayor–council form of government is used in 81% of all Washington cities.


This decision goes beyond any particular administration, issue, or mayor.  The wisdom of our founding fathers created a divided government with checks and balances to subdue the passions of the moment and to bring reason and thoughtfulness into the process.


Our current mayor-council government is historically proven and ensures balance of power. The mayor has the administrative responsibilities and the city council acts as the legislative branch; a separation of governmental branches with a balance of powers.


A change in our form of government will grant the council both the legislative and the executive authority. The council will increase from five to SEVEN members through an appointment by the current council. This larger council will have all the power, spearheaded by an unelected bureaucrat who doesn’t answer to the citizens of Black Diamond.


Keep a strong mayor who is accountable directly to YOU! Keep democracy vibrant in our city. Vote NO on Proposition 1.

The elected City Council is accountable to the citizens of Black Diamond.   As our city grows, outdated methods must be replaced by professional management.  The council hires the city manager.  Council manager separates policy and politics from administration.  Unlike federal and state government, our city has no judicial branch to keep an autocratic Mayor in check.  Council-manager government has proven to be adaptable to complex municipal issues.  VOTE YES!


Statement submitted by: Janie Edelman, Carol Lynn Harp and Ulla Kemman

The current council recently attempted a lawsuit which the mayor was able to stop using her executive powers, saving the city potentially millions of dollars. The balance of power worked. There is no evidence that a city manager will save money over our current professional city administrator. Our quality of life, environment and taxation are already protected in our current form of government. Keep your right to vote for mayor. Vote NO.


Statement submitted by: William Boston, Kristine Hanson and Johna Thomson

Simple Majority (RCW 35A.06.060)
1253 en-US Production

TTY: Relay 711

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