Promising to bring strong leadership to navigate coming changes, Lynnwood City Council President George Hurst said Monday he is running for mayor in 2021.
Hurst is the second candidate to publicly announce for mayor. Fellow Councilmember Christine Frizzell said last December she would also be campaigning for the position. Current Mayor Nicola Smith, who was elected in 2014, is not be seeking a third term. The primary election is Aug. 3, 2021. The top two candidates will advance to the November general election.
According to Hurst, the next four years will be critical to Lynnwood’s future and the city needs a mayor ready face the challenges brought with the arrival of Sound Transit’s Lynnwood Link light rail extension in 2024.
“The stress on our infrastructure, the added demands on the city budget and a city population that will grow exponentially, will require experience, foresight and strong leadership,” he said. “As your next mayor, I will work relentlessly to meet these challenges and fulfill these requirements to better serve the people of Lynnwood.”
Hurst is currently serving his sixth year as a city councilmember. He and his wife Pam have lived in Lynnwood for 27 years and raised their children here, all of them Lynnwood High School graduates.
If elected, Hurst said he would focus on preparing the city’s infrastructure to handle the buses and traffic to and from light rail. With plans to widen roads to ease future traffic congestion, Hurst also said he plans to address the many residential roads in Lynnwood that also need maintenance and attention.
As the city continues to deal with the impacts of COVID-19, Hurst said he aims to provide support struggling residents and business owners. One way he said he would do this would be by eliminating city-imposed taxes on necessities like water, sewer and electricity.
Additionally, Hurst said he supports removing the city’s $40 fee attached to vehicle tab registration. In 2019, 55% of Lynnwood residents voted in favor of I-976, a Tim Eyman-sponsored measure that would have set car tab fees at a flat $30 and required the state to use Kelley Blue Book to value vehicles.
Though the initiative was approved by 53% of Washington state voters, the state’s Supreme Courts struck it down last October calling the measure “deceptive and misleading.” Hurst said he believes government should uphold the will of the people and, in Lynnwood, remove the city-imposed fee.
During recent city council meetings, Hurst has repeatedly called for the city to do something about the need for more housing. The city has been working lately to develop a housing policy to guide development. According to Hurst, the need for affordable housing is a “huge issue” for those who work and live in Lynnwood.
“With over 3,000 apartments now being planned or built and single-family homes being constructed costing over $900,000, (I feel) our city is lacking ‘the missing middle,'” he said. “(I plan) to address this to make Lynnwood a more affordable city to live in.”
In addition to serving on the council, Hurst sits on the 911 Personnel and Future Facilities committees and the Snohomish Emergency Radio Advisory Board. Hurst is also a member of the I-405 BRT Elected Advisory Group, Puget Sound Regional Council Executive Board and is the Lynnwood Planning Commission liaison.
This is Hurst’s second run for mayor; he lost to Smith in 2017.
For more information, visit www.Hurst4Lynnwood.com.