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Council News

Gossett, Hague to continue as County Council Chair, Vice Chair in 2012


New committee created, committee chairs appointed as part of annual Council reorganization


The Metropolitan King County Council today completed its annual reorganization by giving its unanimous support to retaining Councilmembers Larry Gossett and Jane Hague as the Council’s leadership team for a second year.

“I am honored that my colleagues have given me the responsibility of directing the Council for a second term,” said Gossett. “King County, along with the state and federal governments, continue to face fiscal challenges. We will meet those challenges, and the responsibilities of providing mandated services while supporting those in our community in crisis, in a bipartisan and transparent manner.”

“I look forward continuing the healthy spirit of collaboration on the Council,” said Hague, who will remain Chair of the Council’s Committee of the Whole. “King County has achieved a lot over the last several years, but it’s critical that the Council maintain its focus on maximizing taxpayer dollars and improving service delivery.”

The Chair and Vice-Chair, working together as the Council’s management team, set the agendas for meetings of the Council and Committee of the Whole and coordinate the referral and scheduling of legislation.

Gossett was first elected to the County Council in 1994. He was instrumental in the creation and implementation of the Adult and Juvenile Justice Operational Master Plans (AJOMP and JJOMP), programs that have focused on alternatives to incarceration and emphasize treatment and prevention over detention. Gossett has served as Budget Chair three times, most recently in 2009.

Councilmember Hague joined the County Council in 1994, and was elected Council Chair two years into her first term. She has held most major Council leadership positions as well as serving on the Budget Leadership Team multiple times. Hague’s leadership has also extended to the National Association of Counties where she served as president and is still a member. She has been elected vice chair of the Council for the last three years.

The Council also adopted the creation of a new committee, the Government Accountability, Oversight and Financial Performance. Councilmember Bob Ferguson will chair this committee, which will be responsible for making recommendations on improving the efficiency, cost effectiveness and performance of all branches of County Government and enhancing the oversight, accountability and transparency in King County Government.

Councilmember Joe McDermott will direct the Council’s 2013 Budget deliberations as chair of the Budget and Fiscal Management Committee.

The Council’s 2012 reorganization includes a new chair for the Law, Justice, Health and Human Service Committee. The full roster of committee leadership is as follows:

Committee of the Whole – Jane Hague, Chair
Considers legislation and policy issues of interest to the entire Council, and is the only standing committee on which all nine members serve. In the fall, during the Council’s deliberations on the 2013 King County Budget, the Committee of the Whole will move to Monday mornings.

Budget and Fiscal Management—Joe McDermott, Chair
Develops the Council’s policy direction for the 2013 budget, and makes recommendations on the County’s structural funding gap and capital and operating budget appropriations. McDermott will also chair the Council’s 4-member Budget Leadership Team (BLT) for the 2013 Budget deliberations.

Government Accountability, Oversight and Financial Performance —Bob Ferguson, Chair
Responsible for making recommendations on improving the efficiency, cost effectiveness and performance of all branches of County Government and enhancing the oversight, accountability and transparency in King County government.

Transportation, Economy and Environment —Larry Phillips, Chair
Responsible for oversight of transportation (including public transit and county roads), salmon recovery, and water quality and control. Makes recommendations on policies relating to growth management (including land use development and regulation), comprehensive planning, annexations, affordable housing, and the unincorporated and rural areas. In 2012, the committee will also take the lead on the Council’s review and update of the King County Comprehensive Plan.

Law, Justice, Health and Human Services — Kathy Lambert, Chair
Considers and makes recommendations on policies relating to public safety, criminal justice and emergency management. Makes policy recommendations relating to public health, human services and housing programs, including the implementation of the Mental Illness and Drug Dependency Action Plan and the Veterans and Human Services Levy.

Members today also appointed chairs for the three regional committees established under the King County Charter that provide a forum for development and review of countywide plans and policies. These committees include elected officials from other local jurisdictions:

Regional Water Quality Committee – Larry Phillips, Chair
Develops, reviews, and recommends countywide policies and plans for water quality and sewer service issues, long range capital facilities plans, rate policies and facilities siting to guide King County’s regional water quality responsibilities.

Regional Policy Committee – Pete von Reichbauer, Chair
Reviews and recommends regional policies and plans, other than transit and water quality. Issues that may be referred to the Committee or be the subject of the committee's policy development include, but are not limited to, public health, human services, open space, housing, solid waste management, regional services financial policies, criminal justice, jails and district court services, and the siting of regional facilities.

Regional Transit Committee –Reagan Dunn, Chair
Reviews and makes recommendations to the County Council on policies and plans for the public transportation services operated by King County. These policies govern the planning and delivery of bus service, commuter vanpools, and van service for people with disabilities; establishing of the structure for transit fares; the purchase of new buses; and the construction of bus shelters, park and ride lots, and other transit facilities.

2012 County Council Committee Assignments

Committee of the Whole: Hague, Chair, Patterson, Vice Chair. All Councilmembers serve on the Committee.

Budget and Fiscal Management: McDermott, Chair, Lambert, Vice Chair. Members: Hague, Patterson, Phillips.

Government Accountability, Oversight and Financial Performance: Ferguson, Chair, von Reichbauer, Vice Chair. Members: Gossett, Lambert

Transportation, Economy and Environment: Phillips, Chair, von Reichbauer, Vice Chair. Members: Gossett, Hague, Lambert, McDermott.

Law, Justice Health and Human Services: Lambert, Chair, Gossett, Vice Chair. Members: Dunn, Ferguson, McDermott.

Regional Policy Committee: von Reichbauer, Chair. Members: Ferguson, Lambert.

Regional Transit Committee: Dunn, Chair. Members: Patterson, McDermott.

Regional Water Quality Committee: Phillips, Chair. Members: Dunn, Gossett.

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