Council Corner: Mark Fagin

Mark Fagin

Please Vote in Our May 19th Election  

With all that is happening in the world right now, voting may not be at the forefront of your mind, but it is time. In addition to electing a Mayor and two City Councilors, there are important decisions to be made on a Countywide Library Services Levy and our own Beaverton Charter. In regards to the Charter, Beaverton is the only city in Oregon with a mayor-council form of government. This means that in Beaverton, the Mayor also acts as the City Manager. 

Starting in September 2019, the City Council began reviewing and discussing the City charter. The result was that proposed revisions to the City charter were developed for voters’ consideration. The base of our current charter dates to the 1940s. The proposed charter would update the current charter in various ways. 

If the measure passes, proposed changes include: 

City Manager: The proposed charter would establish the position of City Manager. This person would be hired by and report to the mayor and council. 

Term Limits: The proposed charter would provide for a consecutive three term limit on each position, which would mean 12 consecutive years. 

Number of Councilors: The proposed charter would increase the City Council from five to seven members by adding an additional councilor and the Mayor. The Mayor would vote on matters before council, as of today Beaverton’s mayor can only vote if there is a tie. To prevent ties, an odd number of votes are needed. 

Gender Neutral Language: The proposed charter would remove gender-exclusive references. If the proposed charter is not adopted, the city’s present mayor-council form of government would remain in place and none of the charter changes described above would occur. 

In the current climate of physical distancing, we are very lucky to live in Oregon and have vote by mail as our standard. One new change this year is that you don’t even need a stamp. After you finish voting, simply put your ballot in the envelopes provided, sign and drop it in the mail. Voting by mail is free and you don’t even have to get in your car. Vote early, your ballot must reach the elections division by the May 19th deadline.