It’s been an incredibly busy week in Yakima. There will be major changes coming to Yakima in the next 7 months and the best part is it will be based on what the people of Yakima want. The last 4 years have been challenging from dealing with the impact of the recession, a lot of major transitions at the highest levels of city government, and finally signing the contract with a new city manager Tony O’Rourke.

When the Yakima City Council agreed 7-0 to hire Mr. O’Rourke and I knew it was a step in the right direction. The new city manager is a hard charger; he has a proven strategy to run a city and it’s all based on what the people think and what direction the Council wants to take the city. The Question will be Mr. O’Rourke’s ability to carry out the mission and the plan, and from his track record he should have no problem in doing so.

There will be a new reality and a renewed focus at City Hall to deliver the best services we can with the money given to us by Yakima taxpayers, myself included. So be on the look out for the upcoming community survey, it will compare Yakima to 50 cities across the country and give the Council valuable information as we plan for the future. We all have to work within the reality of our budget situation and setting a realistic expectation is a big part of being able to meet or exceed the new reality of Yakima’s local government services. Exciting times are ahead my friends and Yakima will be a better place to work live and play. –Micah Cawley