City Council agreed to a full-time policy analyst | Letter

Jun 18, 2014

The following response from Council President Randy Lord was received after Beacon deadline last week. He has given his permission to run it as a letter to the editor.-Ed.

I believe Sen. Marko Liias is qualified for the job.

However, I am concerned about the conflict of interest, real or perceived, that we will have by having our state senator on our payroll. Will his ability to represent our city be hindered by this affiliation?

Combine that with his time away from Mukilteo while serving on the senate, we will not be receiving the services of a full-time analyst, that the council agreed to when the position was described by the mayor.

As much as I value his prior experience and potential contributions, if I were in that position, I would not have risked losing the public trust by appointing him to that position.

Thank you,

Randy Lord,

Mukilteo City Councilmember

Comments (1)
Posted by: Terry Preshaw | Jun 18, 2014 15:54

I agree with Council President Lord's assessment: the potential loss of public trust is not worth the potential value of what Sen. Liias could bring to the table.

There is no rationalization that can remove the appearance of unfairness/impropriety/conflict of interest that folks feel in their gut when they hear about Jennifer appointing her good friend and political ally Marko to this position.

I have no doubt that the appointment was done with the best of intentions and adherence to good HR practices. That is not the point. The point is that no matter what way it is presented, folks believe what they see: a friend helping another friend at taxpayer expense. Trust in our government is eroded, Jennifer and Marko's credibility is lessened. We all lose when this happens.

The remedy is to swiftly rectify this mistake in judgement: it is not too late for Jennifer to reconsider and for Marko to resign. That is how he can best serve Mukilteo.

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