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VOTE411 Voter Guide

City of Kirkland Council Position No. 1

The City Council is the legislative body for the City. The Council adopts local laws (ordinances) to secure the safety and assist the well-being of the city residents, the city's physical environment and amenities, and the city economy. The Council is responsible for approving financial expenditures and adopting the city budget as well as establishing policies and regulations in order to guide the city's future. The elected mayor serves as chief administrative officer for the city.
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    Jay Arnold (NP) Deputy Mayor, day job as web developer and IT consultant

  • Martin Morgan (NP)

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Biographical Information

What are the issues surrounding your city/town's infrastucture?

How do you think your city/town could best respond to homelessness?

What is your commitment to senior citizens?

How do you think your city/town should approach legal and illegal immigration issues?

What are other major issues facing your city or town?

Of those listed above, which one is the most urgent?

What methods will you use to work with the mayor (if you have an elected mayor) or the city manager or administrator(if you have an chief administrator hired by the council)?

Phone (425)533-2889
Email jay@votejayarnold.com
Town where you live Kirkland
Experience (300 characters max) Elected to Council in 2013, I was selected by my colleagues to serve as Deputy Mayor last year. I previously served on the Planning Commission and on boards of non-profits working on growth, renewable energy, and good government. I co-chaired Kirkland's successful parks levy campaign in 2012.
Kirkland is growing dramatically. We need to improve our transportation infrastructure and make choices available so that each new job and each new house does not mean a new car on our streets and highways. Most of the new development is happening in mixed use developments in Totem Lake and downtown, with new centers opening late this year and next. They will have shops, restaurants, and entertainment to serve more of our daily needs within our city, and add housing near transit. The Council worked to secure investments in Sound Transit 3 with I-405 Bus Rapid Transit stopping at Totem Lake and 85th (with a connection to downtown), and from the state with a new Totem Lake interchange. We are engaging with WSDOT and Sound Transit to make sure project designs work well for Kirkland. We also need to accelerate plans for local improvements around the new developments, such as fixing traffic choke points, incorporating smart signal technology, and improving safety for bikes and pedestrians.
Responding to homelessness will take work at the local, regional, and state level. In Kirkland, the City Council adopts a two-year budget and work plan; this year, we added an item to support community groups in their efforts to site and build a women's and family shelter. Groups identified a site at a local church and we are identifying funding sources, working through design issues, and coordinating with the neighborhood. In addition to providing some funding for the shelter, we also significantly increased our city's budget contribution to a Regional Coalition for Housing (ARCH) whose work includes affordable housing targeted to rapidly re-housing the homeless. The Council supports regional funding sources like the County Veterans and Seniors levy up for renewal this year. We have more work to do to align our efforts around the idea of rapid re-housing, enabling innovative approaches like tiny houses, and working with the state legislature on additional funding sources.
I am committed to making Kirkland a place for people at all ages and stages of life, especially enabling folks to "age in place". Kirkland has an active and engaged senior council that provides resources and information to seniors in the community, advises the City Council on policy issues, and adopts and lobbies for a state legislative agenda. We have a joint meeting with them every year. Affordable housing is a major issue. The Council has formed housing strategy task force to look at this issue and develop recommendations. I challenged the group to look broadly at zoning opportunities, funding issues, and policy changes.
Our community has come together this year, proudly and formally declaring Kirkland a welcoming and inclusive city. Kirkland has been a regional leader, not only making an official proclamation, but also adopting protections in the Kirkland Municipal Code to ensure staff members provide city services regardless of status among a number of criteria (race, age, religion, sexual orientation, county of origin, veteran status, disability, etc., including immigration status). This is especially important for our police officers and firefighters, because both they and the community as a whole are safer when everyone feels comfortable coming to them if they need help. The City Council will be following up to ensure that city policies, staff training, and practices followed demonstrate the community's value of inclusiveness not just in word, but in actions.
Preserving our quality-of-life amidst this significant growth will require smart planning and wise investments. This includes: 1) Parks: continuing to acquire parks and open space; adding improvements and neighborhood connections to the Cross Kirkland Corridor, 2) Neighborhoods: maintaining safe, walkable neighborhoods with convenient grocery stores, shops, and restaurants, 3) Public safety: supporting community policing, addressing gap areas of firefighter response time
Public safety is the priority. We are building a new fire station in a location that will help address response time issues. In addition, we need to pursue ways that we can hire more police and firefighters as we grow and provide better service. Only two of our five fire stations are staffed respond to multiple, simultaneous calls. Our police officers need to have the time and flexibility for community policing, but are spending more and more time just responding to emergency calls.
Kirkland has the Council-Manager form of government: the elected City Council is part-time, and Councilmembers hire a city manager to run the city day-to-day under our direction. In Kirkland, the Council adopts a work plan and budget every two years. This aligns our policy priorities and spending, and ensures the the City Council, City Manager, and staff are working on the most critical items. In addition, we have City Council committees that focus on policy areas, including a special workgroup I proposed this year to focus on transportation.
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