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City of Washougal Latest News

Posted on: September 21, 2020

Conversation with the Mayor: City Council Position 5 Vacancy



Learn about the options the Washougal City Council has for deciding what to do with the Position 5 vacancy. Mayor Molly Coston would like your input and will be taking questions regarding this topic or anything else you would like to know more about.

City Council Position 5 Vacancy Fact Sheet


Thursday, September 24 at 6pm


Conversation with the Mayor will be held virtually on Zoom.


  1. Join the Zoom Meeting: (no passcode needed; click the Raise Hand icon)
  2. Call in:
    360.833.7999 (hit *9 to “raise your hand” for comment) 
  3. Submit your comments/questions to:
  4. Sept. 28 Washougal City Council Workshop and Meeting
    Provide input during citizen comments at the Sept. 28 Washougal City Council regular meeting during worksession (5pm) or at the meeting (7pm). Zoom details for this meeting can be found at


Councilmember Kutch resigned his position on Friday, September 11. Due to the nuances of our recent change in form of government, the Council has a couple of options.

In November 2018, Washougal voters passed Proposition 8 that changed the city’s form of government from Mayor-Council to Council-Manager and the council selected Molly Coston as mayor to serve as the council chair and as the ceremonial head of the city.

When an incumbent executive mayor is in office and a change of government occurs, going from council-mayor to council-manager, the sitting executive mayor becomes an eighth council member and is so seated until the expiration of the mayoral term to which they were elected. The statutory construct for councils for communities of the size of Washougal is only seven members.

Presently, Mayor Molly Coston is the eighth council member and her term ends in December 2021. The eighth council member position would be eliminated at the expiration of that term. However, the resignation of Council member Ray Kutch presents an opportunity to move back to the standard seven member council earlier than December 2021.


Council membership reverts to the standard number of 7

  1. Appoint Mayor Coston to Position 5
  2. Council can reaffirm Mayor Coston as Mayor for remainder of biennial term (through 2021)


  1. Council membership reverts to the standard number of 7
  2. Mayor Coston can be 
  3. re-affirmed as Mayor 
  4. Position 5 on Nov 2021 ballot


Council membership remains at 8 until Dec. 31, 2021 


  1. Advertise for applicants to fill Position 5
  2. Earliest timing
    9/29 – Solicit applications (3 weeks)
    10/20 – application period closes
    10/26 – Applicant interviews and Council appointment at regular Council meeting


  1. Council membership stays at 8 until Dec. 31, 2021
  2. Position 5 on Nov. 2021 ballot
  3. Winner of election assumes position upon certification of election results in late Nov. 2021

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