A seat on the city council

Thursday, Dec. 9 is the deadline to submit a letter of interest and a resume for those who want to be appointed to the vacant Keizer City Council position. Applicants will be able to make a brief presentation and take questions from the sitting councilors on Dec. 20. This is a golden opportunity for those who want to be part of setting policy for the city of Keizer.

This is the time for those from historically underrepresented groups to seriously consider throwing their hat in the ring. They do need to recognize that a city councilor represents all 40,000 residents. A councilor can—and should—watch over the interests of those in the community who feel they have been invisible.

For almost 40 years the city council has been comprised of friends and neighbors. Common sense has been the hallmark of decisions made by dozens of women and men who have served since 1982. There is little stomach for ideological diatribes. Every councilor brings their experience, knowledge and background to their position. Keizer is a beautiful tapestry of backgrounds, ethnicities and opinions. Everyone has the right to express themselves, either as a councilor, or a resident addressing the council. 

Some may say that being a city councilor is a thankless job, but that is not true. Decisions that affect our daily lives are made at the local level with school boards, county commission and especially city councils. Serving ones’ community as a city councilor is a noble job, far from thankless.

When pondering applicants for the vacant seat, the city council will no doubt consider experience. Through the years, many Keizer city councilors got their start by volunteering for any of Keizer’s citizen committees and boards. That experience is good but it is not essential. We think the best qualification for a future city councilor is a desire to see that Keizer maintains its desirability as a place to live and do business.

Leave the rabid politics to those in Washington, D.C., in Keizer we want our councilors to be polite, moderate and neighborly. In other words, we would like to see our council as if painted by Norman Rockwell.