Shall a Citizen Councilor Network be established in King County
for citizens to meet, discuss public issues, and provide opinions?
Ballot Measure Summary
This measure would establish a network of citizen councilors to engage in dialogue on topics of public importance. Topics would be periodically identified by the King County Auditor based on special questionnaires sent to citizens who choose to participate, plus suggestions from public officials. The program would be coordinated through the county audior's office, would encourage citizen volunteers to meet in small groups, and develop opinions. Opinions would be tabulated with funding provided by donations.
This bill constructively addresses the implications of the passage of Initiative 695 in 2000 and defeat of Referendums 51 and 53 in 2002 and has no fiscal impact. This is a self-funded citizenship program, to better enable all citizens, young and old, to exercise their constitutional rights of freedom of speech, the press, assembly, petition, and to be heard in symbolic dialogues with the King County Executive, Auditor, and others.
Step 1. <<< COUNTY AUDITOR
To organize, County Auditor appoints a volunteer
Citizen Councilor Coordinator and Deputys.**
• Selects priority of issues suggested for public
discussion and submits to Steering Committee for
consideration. Steering Committee is composed
of representatives without vote from:
the county executive or the executive's representatiave;
King County councilmembers or the councilmembers' representatives;
The executive director of the Puget Sound Regional Council or the executive director's representative;
The superintendent of each school district in King Couny or the superintendent's representative;
The mayor of each city in the county or the mayor's representative;
The county executive from adjacent counties or the executive's representative;
The president of a community college, college or university located in King County or the president's representative;
A representative from any organization participating in the citizen councilor network that has twenty-five or more groups of four to twelve persons each;
The citizen councilor coordinator and the coordinator's two deputies;
Others invited by the auditor.
Assigns issues reviewed by the Steering Committee
to the Citizen Councilor Coordinator and
Deputy who assign official “Value Reporters” to
prepare materials. (Value Reporters represent “the
people’s right to know.”)
• After review by the Steering Committee,
authorizes distribution of materials prepared by
the Citizen Councilor Coordinator to the Citizen
Councilor Communicators for Conveners.
Step 2.<<< CITIZEN COUNCILOR
COORDINATOR AND DEPUTY
(Are volunteers selected by and amenable to the County
Solicits Citizen Councilor groups and volunteers
from community service, educational, civic,
business, unions, religions, and other organizations.
Assigns “value reporters” to interview scholars,
experts, officials and planners, leaders, and others
• Produces materials
as evenhandedly as possible on public issues for the
• E-mails approved materials to Citizen
Councilor Communicators for Conveners and/or
participating school districts involved in student
citizenship, psycho-social education, and critical thinking
programs with citizen and parents using
Provides mailing labels and Citizen Councilor
response sheets and materials at regular costs to
a participating organization, county, municipality,
or school district if a private iteration of their own
Councilor or youth groups is desired at their own
Step 3. <<< CITIZEN COUNCILOR CONVENER
• Convenes and hosts group meeting of 4-12
Councilors in homes or workplaces on thirty-day
notice by the Citizen Councilor Coordinator.
Step 4. <<< CITIZEN COUNCILOR
(A Councilor is: “One elected or appointed to advise a sovereign
or chief magistrate.” Webster)
Meets in own small group of 4-12
persons on call of the Convener, studies materials received
from the Citizen Councilor Coordinator as
approved by the County Auditor, and states own
position to others in a two-minute “Day-in-the-
Sun” exchange with other Councilors, and then participates in an open
discussion on issues raised with other Councilors.
Step 5.<<< CITIZEN COUNCILOR
Responds individually to objective questions
posed on an Opinionnaire® (yes, no, abstain, object;
multiple-choice; Likert or “end anchor” value
scales etc.) using mark-sense, machine-scannable,
Forum Foundation Citizen Councilor® response
sheets or other interactive methods such as an Internet website.
Step 6.<<< CITIZEN COUNCILOR CONVENER
• After meeting, mails completed response
sheets to the County Auditor for
tabulation by the Citizen Councilor Coordinator.
Step 7.<<< CITIZEN COUNCILOR
COORDINATOR AND DEPUTY
Scans and tabulates response sheets using the
Fast Forum® computer program that is available
without cost to this county project as in-kind
services by the Forum Foundation, 4426 Second
Ave. N.E., Seattle, WA 98105-6191. Tel. 206-
634-0420; Fax 206-633-3561.
Step 8. <<< COUNTY AUDITOR
Oversees tabulation and summarization by the
Coordinator. Returns a Viewspaper® summary and a profile report to county officials and to participating Citizen Councilor Network groups and libraries. Maintains
profile reports generated by the Citizen Councilor
Coordinator for reference by the media and the
public. Provides data that councilmembers and others
may analyze on a website.
** When $10,000 has been received in donations, a 1-800 number is established and ads placed. The Coordinator acknowledges subscriptions and asks for volunteer Citizen Councilor Conveners and Communicators for meetings homes or workplaces. When a total of $20,000 has been received in donations, the County Auditor calls in the subscriptions, establishes fees and services, and initiates the program.
Note: Forum Foundation is a Washington state nonprofit,
educational research corporation that was organized in 1970 to do research in
the field of administrative theory while Dick Spady
was a student in the Graduate School of Business at
the University of Washington. The following
trademarks of the Foundation are registered, United
States Patent Office: "Fast Forum," "Opinionnaire," "
Viewspaper," "PLAN Forum," "Citizen Councilor," "
Fraternity Councilor," and "An Inspirational City in
Pursuit of Happiness!" The following trademarks: "Quest Forum™," "PC
Rating™," "CPC Rating™", and "MPC Rating™" are
pending. The Forum Foundation permits use of its
trademarks, where appropriate, when credit and
web reference (ForumFoundation.org) is given to
the foundation. See The Leadership of Civilization
Building (Administrative and Civilization Theory,
Symbolic Dialogue, and Citizen Skills for the 21st
Century) by Richard J. Spady and Richard S. Kirby
with collaboration by Cecil H. Bell Jr., 2002. The
Forum Foundation Fast Forum® computer program
was first developed at the University of Washington
Academic Computer Center in 1970. The proprietary
computer program of the Forum Foundation is