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City Government




Airway Heights Council-Manager Form of Government

In November 2000, the citizens of Airway Heights voted to approve the change from a Mayor-Council form of government to a Council-Manager form of government. The Council-Manager plan of government is fully defined in RCW 35a Chapter 13.  The councilmembers shall be the only elective officers of a code city electing to adopt the council-manager plan of government authorized by this chapter, except where statutes provide for an elective municipal judge. The council shall appoint an officer whose title shall be "city manager" who shall be the chief executive officer and head of the administrative branch of the city government. The city manager shall be responsible to the council for the proper administration of all affairs of the code city. The council of a noncharter code city having less than twenty-five hundred inhabitants shall consist of five members; when there are twenty-five hundred or more inhabitants the council shall consist of seven members.  Provided that if the population of a city after having become a code city decreases from twenty-five hundred or more to less than twenty-five hundred, it shall continue to have a seven-member council. If, after a city has become a council-manager code city its population increases to twenty-five hundred or more inhabitants, the number of council offices in such city may increase from five to seven members upon the affirmative vote of a majority of the existing council to increase the number of council offices in the city. When the population of a council-manager code city having five council offices increases to five thousand or more inhabitants, the number of council offices in the city shall increase from five to seven members. In the event of an increase in the number of council offices, the city council shall, by majority vote, pursuant to RCW 35A.13.020, appoint two persons to serve in these offices until the next municipal general election, at which election one person shall be elected for a two-year term and one person shall be elected for a four-year term. The number of inhabitants shall be determined by the most recent official state or federal census or determination by the state office of financial management. A charter adopted under the provisions of this title, incorporating the council-manager plan of government set forth in this chapter may provide for an uneven number of councilmembers not exceeding eleven.

The city manager is the chief executive and administrative officer of the City of Airway Heights and is responsible to the City Council for the proper administration of the affairs of the city. In a council-manager government, the council essentially hires the city manager to run the day-to-day operations of the city. To that end the city manager has the following powers and duties, listed below.  Under this new form of government, the Mayor presides over the meetings of City Council. In addition to the powers conferred upon him as Mayor, he continues to have the rights, privileges and immunities as a member of City Council. The Mayor is recognized as the head of the City for ceremonial purposes and by the Governor for purposes of military law and has no regular administrative duties.

To read the 2015-2016 City Council priorities, click here.

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