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Council News Release

1/10/2011  3:00:00 PM
Megan Coppersmith, Council Communications, (206) 684-8159
Dana Robinson Slote, (206) 615-0061

Council President Richard Conlin
Councilmember Sally Bagshaw
Councilmember Tim Burgess
Councilmember Sally J. Clark
Councilmember Jean Godden
Councilmember Bruce Harrell
Councilmember Nick Licata
Councilmember Mike O'Brien
Councilmember Tom Rasmussen

Seattle City Council will lead on education, transportation,
and economic development in 2011

"Seattle for Washington" key to local and regional success

SEATTLE The Seattle City Council today unveiled their 2011 priorities, confirming their steadfast commitment to improving the lives of Seattle residents and encouraging a healthy regional economy.

Each Councilmember remarked on distinctive priorities as they relate to fostering safe, just and healthy communities for all, building a livable city for our future and continuing focus on investing public resources fairly and effectively.

Priority: Economic recovery
"Creating jobs and restoring our economy is still our number one priority. This year the Council will continue to listen, lead, and deliver on streamlining regulations and licensing, advancing public works projects, and supporting job training and business activity," said Council President Richard Conlin, chair of the Regional Development and Sustainability Committee.

Priority: Schools and education
"By 2018, just seven short years from now, two-thirds of Washington State jobs will require some form of post-secondary education. As a city, we are falling down on the important job of preparing our children for this reality," said Councilmember Tim Burgess, chair of the Public Safety and Education Committee. "We need to raise our expectations. We must believe that every child can learn and graduate from high school and be ready for college and the career of their choice. This Council will continue to push for better schools and a high-quality education for every child. Our kids deserve nothing less."

Priority: Development and SR 99 replacement project
"Day by day I see stirrings of new development and hiring, as our economy begins to recover," said Councilmember Sally J. Clark, chair of the Committee on the Built Environment. "This year, the Council will focus on the neighborhoods in South Downtown, at Yesler Terrace, and around our light rail stations. Our plan is to help these neighborhoods bloom, while retaining the unique cultural identities of places like Little Saigon and Pioneer Square."

Priority: Partnerships and SR 520
"We've repeatedly heard the phrase in these tough economic times' used with a negative connotation. These times are our opportunity. Times can and will be better as we move forward," said Councilmember Sally Bagshaw, chair of the Parks and Seattle Center Committee. "We will work with our partners: the governments across the street, down I-5, across the lake and across the country. We will work with every person, every business and every neighborhood in this city to get things done."

Priority: Transit
"This past year was one of extraordinary progress; from the Mercer Corridor to the Spokane Street viaduct, major projects are underway and on-schedule," said Councilmember Tom Rasmussen, chair of the Transportation Committee. "We reached an unprecedented regional agreement on providing more equitable Metro Transit policies, setting the stage for the challenge in 2011 of securing a stable source of funding for our public transportation system and maintenance and repair of our roads and highways. I will be working closely with leaders from around the state to solve these statewide challenges, recognized by every city and town."

Priority: Clean energy
"Council's 2011 priorities illustrate our continuing focus on economic growth, social equity and sustainability," said Councilmember Bruce Harrell, chair of the Energy, Technology and Civil Rights Committee. "That focus will influence our policy decisions as we develop City Light's strategic plan that will incorporate technological and environmental changes that have occurred in our power industry."

Priority: Environmental stewardship and local food initiative
"The long-term success of our city is dependent the Council making sustainable decisions. A robust climate action plan, a continued focus on healthy local food production and a comprehensive zero waste strategy are all components of a resilient Seattle," stated Councilmember Mike O'Brien, chair of Seattle Public Utilities and Neighborhoods Committee.

Priority: Housing and homelessness
"One of our overarching priorities is putting people first by keeping the safety net intact and helping Seattle residents through this difficult economic time," stated Councilmember Nick Licata, chair of the Housing, Human Services, Health, and Culture Committee.

Priority: Budget and libraries
"Small signs of an improving economy are beginning to spring up. While we're not yet out of the economic woods, there are signs of better days ahead. My pledge is to stay the course by keeping city government lean while maintaining essential services like libraries, public safety and human services," stated Councilmember Jean Godden, chair of the Budget and Finance Committee.

Visit the Council's website for a complete list of the Council's 2011 priorities and accomplishments from 2010, as, as they relate to last year's priorities.

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