REDMOND, OR -- Redmond’s City Council will have two new members, come January, and a third is anticipated the following month. Councilors and Councilors-elect took part in a training retreat over the weekend. Mayor-elect Ed Fitch says it was a chance to get to know each other, "Building that teamwork and looking at how we want to function as a Council; what rules we want to have." They were also briefed on future city plans, "What projects are in place, where are we at on them, what can we expect in the coming year for issues to come before the Council, particularly for the first quarter or in the spring."
Fitch anticipates changes when he becomes the Council’s first new leader in more than a decade. He tells KBND News he wants an open discussion process, "We’ll have an opportunity for two or three Councilors to bring issues up rather than just relying on just the Mayor or majority of Council. So, I think some minority issues will be discussed - or an opportunity to have that on the agenda. I’m recommending that we have more joint sessions with our committees and commissions."
They’re also developing plans for filling the vacancy created by Fitch's election to Mayor. "What I’m going to recommend to the Council is that we have an open process where people can apply," Fitch says, "Those applications should be shared with the Council and reviewed, in more of a consensus-building appointment process, rather than just have me pick somebody and ask the Council to approve them." He hopes to start the process in late December and have the person appointed by the end of January. A similar process is already underway in Bend, to fill Councilor Melanie Kebler’s seat when she becomes Mayor.