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Does The Mayor of Yakima Have Real Power? – Mayor’s Blog


The latest question to come in through our “Ask the Mayor” section…Do you have any real power?


The long and short answers is that it all depends on what your definition of power is? The City of Yakima is ruled by a City Charter and in Article II section 3 is the definition of the role of the Mayor of Yakima.

As far as having real power, I like any other Council member can get information pretty quick, can ask questions and get answers on behalf of citizens, and can bring issues and ideas in front of the City Council. I guess if the Governor were to declare marshal law then the City Council could give me real administrative authority in that situation. The answer to the question is the City Council as a majority has real power and it’s an honor to serve as one of seven members. Here is the section of the city charter that I referenced above. To read the entire city charter and learn more about how Yakima’s government functions click here. I look forward to answering more questions.

SECTION 3. The Council shall choose its own chairman at its first meeting
and at the first meeting after the subsequent biennial elections. The chairman
shall have the title of Mayor during the biennium for which chosen. The Mayor
shall preside at all meetings of the Council and shall also have the powers and
perform the duties conferred and imposed by this charter and the ordinances of
the City. The Mayor shall be recognized as the head of the City for all ceremonial
purposes and by the Governor for purposes of military law. The Mayor shall have
no regular administrative duties but in time of public danger or emergency shall, if
so authorized and directed by a majority vote of the Council, take command of
the police, maintain order and enforce the law. The Mayor shall also have the
rights, privileges and immunities of a member of the Council with the right to vote
as another member thereof. If a vacancy occurs in the office of Mayor, or in case
of the Mayor’s absence or disability, a Mayor pro tem shall be elected by the
Council from its members to act as Mayor for the unexpired term or during the
continuance of the absence or disability.

Ask The Mayor your question here:

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