During Monday night’s City Council meeting, Perry Mayor Jay Pattee announced that he will not be running again in the upcoming election. Alongside Pattee, an additional two seats will be open for the city council.
Pattee commented that he’s been open about his discontinued run for the Mayor’s seat.
“What I’ve learned early on is that the main things that make a mayor strong is to have a voice and an opinion, make sure the people know it, make sure you get the information out, and build a consensus on important issues,” said Mayor Jay Pattee.
Mayor Pattee described two elements related to the city that he holds dearly: the firming and future of local options sales tax and continuity and succession. Pattee commented that continuity and succession have been a struggle.
Looking around the table, Pattee addressed council about the open position.
“I think that for one thing, starting right around this table, there isn’t a person whose sitting at this table that wouldn’t make a great mayor,” Pattee said. “It makes sense to me that it would be somebody from council because of the experience that you bring to he job.”
If not a council member, Pattee believes bringing in a new member would also be beneficial.
“More or less they would be a mayor in training, and they would benefit from the wisdom of the council,” Pattee said.
Signatures for both the two city council positions and the mayor position will be turned in on Thursday, Sept. 21. Pattee hopes to see both an age and gender range in the upcoming years with city council members.
“I think it might be nice to have some younger blood on the council,” Pattee said. “It would be wonderful if a young person was willing to step up and kind of take notes as a council person and maybe who knows, that person would be mayor in a few years.”
“That being said, there’s a lot of wisdom around the table and I hope there will always be a balance that way.”
In the past, the term for Perry’s mayor lasted four years, but was changed to two years in order to bring more candidates, Pattee described.
“The one thing that’s still attractive of running for mayor is that it’s a two year commitment,” Pattee said. “I think two years might be a time that somebody else could garnish some experience and maybe grow into the job.”
Pattee described his continued dedication to the community.
“I’m not going to be the mayor of Perry anymore after January 1st, but I still live here and I still really care about this town,” Pattee said.
Pattee hopes more will begin to come forward about running for the position, and he says he will try to help provide a smooth transition without getting too involved.
“I’ll be happy to help in any way with transition, sometimes I look at that though and I say that with caution, because it’s really nice if a person just kind of cuts the cord and lets the new direction happen rather than be seen as an interference.”