Mayoral transition already starting
Dave Earling expects to be sworn in as mayor of Edmonds around 4 p.m. on Nov. 29.
That’s the date when he legally has to be sworn in, but there’s a small catch. The swearing-in usually takes place at a city council meeting, but there is no meeting that night.
“We’ll probably have another swearing-in with a ceremony at the next council meeting,” he said.
He’s already busy though, getting ready to take over the mayoral duties, and will begin meeting with staff over the next couple of weeks.
And Earling says Mayor Mike Cooper has been helpful in letting him get up to speed.
“Mike’s been very good,” Earling said. “He’s allowed me access with staff, things like that.”
Earling is getting ready to begin work on a number of issues, but not all – the budget for instance.
“It’s an OK budget,” Earling said. “But unless there’s a holdup, it will be finished before I get sworn in. If council moves on it, I’ll respect that.”
Other things, however, he’s ready to work toward.
“Something that’s pretty important is that we strike a positive tenor between all the electeds,” he said.
“The citizens of Edmonds are used to seeing leaders make positive progress and making good positive decisions.
“I’m hoping mayor and council can agree to an agenda. We all know mid-2013 expenses will exceed revenues.”
Earling feels there are a lot of positives out there.
“But we need to figure out how to coordinate them,” he said.
He cites the strategic plan, the Business Improvement District (BID) and positive work going on at 5 Corners, Westgate and Firdale Village.
“We can increase revenues through positive business development in those areas,” he said.
“It’s important for the electeds, with the challenges in the budget, to work together to achieve a common agenda to economically enhance our community.
“Few of us want to see tax increases or further budget cuts, so the only other option is to increase revenue.
Earling also notes the Port of Edmonds wants to develop Harbor Square.
“There could be new neighborhoods there,” he said. “It could be perfect for young professionals who work in Seattle, get off the Sounder train and walk to their apartments.
“But that potential hasn’t been pulled together in a plan. It would probably generate hundreds of thousands of dollars a year in property and retail taxes.
“Everyone is concerned about heights, but there has to be a way to make it work that everyone can be happy with.”
Earling said the outpouring from the community on his election has been “fabulous.”
“People want to see a positive outlook and their mayor and council working together,” he said.
“I’m optimistic about the future of this community.
“We have a history of a can-do community; working together to achieve. We need to continue that tradition.”