Changes proposed for City’s boards and commissions

great dealA number of changes to the City of Lynnwood’s boards and commissions have been proposed by City staff.

The City Council received a briefing on the proposals at the Aug. 3 work session.

Currently some of the members of the boards and commissions can be non-residents, but the requirements were fairly narrow, such as having a child in the Edmonds School District. City staff is proposing that non-residents be required to be a resident of the Lynnwood Municipal Growth Area and that they be called Community Stakeholders. The only boards and commissions that non-residents can serve are: Arts Commission, Library Board, Parks and Recreation Board, Historical Commission and Diversity Commission. Each can have up to two members as Community Stakeholders.

City staff also is proposing that the Historical Commission and the Heritage Park Partners Advisory Board be combined into a new History and Heritage Board. The Historical Commission has struggled in recent years to recruit and retain members, City staff said. In addition, the two boards have a similar scope of work.

Four positions would be termed at-large members and would be appointed through the normal process. Two could be Community Stakeholders and the terms would be for three years.

Three positions would be one-year terms and would be appointed from among the following organizations: Alderwood Manor Heritage Association, Sno-Isle Genealogical Society, Heritage Park Docents and Snohomish County Tourism Bureau. The new board also would invite the Arts Commission, Parks and Recreation Board, Planning Commission and the Diversity Commission to select someone to be a liaison member. Because members cannot serve on two boards or commissions, these would be non-voting members of the History and Heritage Board.

Members of the Historical Commission and the Heritage Park Partners Advisory Board have been consulted about the changes and approve of them.

City staff also is proposing that the terms of the members of the Planning Commission be changed from six years to four years. Current members would serve out their full terms. City staff indicated that most cities do not have six-year terms for Planning Commission members. If a member has six absences in a calendar year, the position would be vacated.

In both Edmonds and Mountlake Terrace, Planning Commission members serve four-year terms. In Brier, the terms are two years and in Mill Creek they are three years.

Councilmember Van AuBuchon, a former member of the Planning Commission, indicated his opposition to reducing the length of terms. Many of the issues the Planning Commission deals with are long term, AuBuchon noted. The learning curve on these issues also is significant, he added.

The City Council is scheduled to consider the proposed changes at Monday’s meeting, which starts at 7 p.m. at the Lynnwood Civic Center, Council Chambers, 19100 44th Ave. W., Lynnwood.

– By David Pan

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