City Council member Tom Hamilton currently serves as mayor of Snohomish. He was selected by the City Council in 2017 to preside at council meetings and also represents the City as mayor for ceremonial purposes. He has no regular administrative duties.
Hamilton’s term on the City Council ends Dec. 31, 2017. His role as mayor, however, ends on November 28, 2017 (see below).
New Role for Mayor
Snohomish will transition from a council-manager form to a mayor-council form of government effective November 28, 2017. That is the date the winner of the Nov. 7 mayoral election will officially take office.
The new mayor serves as the City’s formal head of government, managing both day to day operations and representing the City on ceremonial occasions.
The mayor will replace the existing city manager as the chief executive to administer the city government on a day-to-day basis. The position of city manager will no longer exist. The mayor will have the option to hire a city administrator to help him or her manage the City.
As a so-called “strong mayor,” (as defined by state law) the new mayor will have duties including the hiring and firing of all staff, negotiating labor agreements, managing city finances and developing proposed policies and future budgets for City Council approval.
The mayor will chair City Council meetings, but may vote only to break a tie vote of the Council on matters other than the passage of any ordinance, grant, or revocation of franchise or license, or any resolution for the payment of money.
Ordinances adopted by the City Council may be vetoed by the mayor, though the City Council may override such vetoes with a majority plus one of the whole membership (5 votes).
The Council will continue to be responsible for adopting various policies, ordinances, resolutions, contracts and budgets. Instead of electing a mayor among its members to serve for two year terms, as it had in the past, the Council may elect a councilmember as mayor pro tem or similar title. The mayor pro tem would chair Council meetings and substitute for the mayor only in the absence of the mayor.
The Council will continue to be comprised of seven members elected at large for staggered, four-year terms.
Mayor’s Term of Office
The new mayor will be elected on November to serve a four-year term ending on December 31, 2021.
Changes to the City’s form of government were set in motion when voters approved a proposition on the 2016 general election ballot.