Join us for City Hall for All | Guest column

  • Friday, July 21, 2017 8:30am
  • Opinion

Graphic courtesy of City of Kirkland

City government is your government. It is our job to represent each and every person in Kirkland and to provide the services and quality of life that keep Kirkland one of the best cities in America to live, work and play. But we can’t be successful without your participation.

The involvement of a diverse, thoughtful mix of voices from every segment of our community allows elected officials to incorporate ideas to enhance projects or policies that benefit everyone. The city council has made it a priority to seek new ways to connect even more of our businesses and residents into those conversations.

That is why council is inviting the community to City Hall for All, an event to be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on July 29 at Kirkland City Hall at 123 5th Ave. Visitors will have the opportunity to meet the city council and staff, meet their neighbors and tour our newly remodeled facility, including the backbone of our intelligent transportation network, the camera hub room, our state-of-the-art television studio and our emergency operations center built to ensure our city is prepared for any kind of emergency.

City Hall for All is a chance to explore how we are implementing programs to support our Welcoming and Inclusive City initiative, which reinforces Kirkland’s commitment to acceptance, equal treatment and safety for everyone in our community. We invite you to meet the leaders of our new Inclusion Network and listen to a talk on how to participate in civil discourse. You can also join in conversation with neighbors at our World Café, a facilitated discussion to help the city understand how we can be more welcoming and inclusive for our residents.

The event will give residents a chance to peek behind the curtain to understand how your voices can be heard, what services the city can provide to make your lives a little easier and how to volunteer in the city. Come meet representatives from our Parks and Community Services Department, Public Works, Facilities, even Finance and Administration. Police and fire will show off their latest equipment and demonstrate life-saving techniques. The kids will have a chance to meet KASPer, our new mascot who will introduce the Kirkland Animal Service Program that begins in January 2018.

We invite the entire community to this four-hour open house. Drop in at any time, or stay for the entire event. Food will be provided from local restaurants. Kids will find fun, creative activities and adults will find new ways to connect with neighbors and your city officials.

As American cultural anthropologist Margaret Mead said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

Please come join us at City Hall for All and make Kirkland the best it can be.

Mayor Amy Walen, Deputy Mayor Jay Arnold and council members Dave Asher, Doreen Marchione, Toby Nixon, Jon Pascal and Penny Sweet.

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