Mill Creek voters really can’t go wrong this fall when they elect City Council members. Each of the four candidates running in contested races offers impressive skills, clear thinking and thorough knowledge of the issues facing the city.
In a pair of close calls, we endorse longtime community volunteer Chuck Wright for Position 5 and incumbent Mike Todd for Position 6. In Position 7, incumbent Mark Bond is running unopposed.
Wright, a retired supervisor with the state Department of Corrections, has shown a tireless commitment to community service for years, serving on a variety of important advisory boards and supporting civic programs behind the scenes. He was a member of the city Planning Commission when plans for the successful Mill Creek Town Center first took shape.
Wright is passionate about issues, and would work hard to keep a new senior center on the council’s agenda, as well as using the Internet to promote greater openness in city government. He also proposes expanding the city’s partnerships with the Sno-Isle Library System and the county sheriff’s office to seek better and more efficient service delivery.
His opponent, Mark Harmsworth, is a thoughtful candidate who has done his homework on the issues. As a team manager at Microsoft, he’s used to bringing groups together to solve problems. His priorities — increased police visibility in neighborhoods, working with neighboring cities to better manage growth and expanding the city’s commercial base — are on target. We think Harmsworth would serve the city well, but Wright’s deep well of experience in local and regional issues make him our choice.
Todd, who was appointed to replace the late Jack Start, then was elected to fill the remainder of Start’s term, is another longtime Mill Creek resident and community volunteer. He has devoted his time to service projects since leaving a senior management position at Fluke Corp. to become be a stay-at-home father. On the council, he pays particularly close attention to financial details, which has long been a strong point of this well-managed city. We believe Todd has served well, and has earned a full term.
His challenger is Ed McNichol, another well-qualified candidate who has a good grasp of the issues. Among his top priorities are greater openness in city government, which he says doesn’t listen well to citizen concerns. He also advocates a greater police presence in neighborhoods. Like the other candidates, we believe he would serve well if elected. We just don’t think a change is needed in this seat.