Roxanne Murphy has apparently announced her resignation from the Bellingham City Council on Facebook. Murphy notes she’s going to be paid substantially more for taking a position as an assistant city manager of Valdez, AK. As of this posting, there is nothing in the Bellingham Herald or in “News” at the city’s website. And by the way, the Facebook post first appeared yesterday afternoon, so even NWCitizen is a bit behind the curve.
Between the city and county, it seems to me we’ve had too many instances of duly elected representatives hoping to abandon their posts for greener pastures. Have we arrived at a municipal scale and complexity that deserves better paid, full-time council members? Administrative pay scales should be set to “attract and retain” qualified personnel. Is it time to consider the advantages of a full-time council?
The council can now be expected to invite and consider applications to fill her at-large position until the general municipal election in November, 2019. Such appointments typically confer an incumbent’s advantage in elections that follow, so folks with an existing interest in local legislative affairs should be queuing up and honing their resumes. We might as well get that conversation started. Your comments are welcome below.