King County Elections certified Initiative 26, securing it a spot on an upcoming ballot. Initiative 26 would make the offices of King County executive, council and assessor nonpartisan.
Joe Fain, initiative sponsor and Citizens for Independent Government chair, submitted signatures from more than 80,000 King County voters in early April, over 50 percent more than the 52,000 required.
“This is a great day for our supporters and for all King County residents,” Fain said. “It’s taken over four decades to give voters the opportunity to be heard on this issue. This is a tremendous victory for voter choice and competent government.”
The King County Council will have until July 1 to consider the proposal. If the council takes no action, the initiative will appear on this August’s primary ballot. Once approved by the voters in August, the proposed Charter Amendment will appear before voters on the November general election ballot.
If the King County Council chooses to adopt the initiative, the Charter Amendment will move directly to the November 2008 ballot, saving King County taxpayers the expense of a redundant election.
“With King County facing over $60 million in projected deficits, the council should save taxpayers the immense expense of two elections and send this issue directly to the voters in November,” urged Fain, who has served both Republican and Democratic members of the King County Council.
While some claim that party labels provide meaningful information to voters in local elections, Fain disagrees.
“The issues that come before King County leaders require professionalism, not partisanship. There is no such thing as a Republican way to fill a pothole, or a Democratic way to drive a bus.”