Districting

Districting survey


Results of the survey can be viewed here.


The City of Everett is currently exploring the possibility of establishing council representation districts.

About Everett


The City of Everett operates under a mayor-council form of government. This means that there is an elected mayor (elected at large), who serves as the City's chief executive and administrative officer, and a seven member elected council (elected at large), which serves as the City’s legislative body. The council has the authority to formulate and adopt City policies and the mayor is responsible for carrying them out. 

What are districts?

While many cities in Washington elect all of their city councilmembers at-large, others have chosen to establish wards or districts, in which some or all of the councilmembers are elected by and represent specific geographic areas of the city.

District structures


Basic legal rules for a proposed district map are that the districts must be:

  • As nearly equal as possible in population
  • As compact as possible
  • Geographically contiguous (no islands), coincide with natural boundaries, and “preserve existing communities of related and mutual interest”
  • Designed so as not to favor or disfavor any racial group or political party
  • Adopted in a process that “ensure[s] full and reasonable public notice” of the proposed districting plan – at least one public hearing with a week’s notice
  • Revised at least every 10 years to reflect most recent federal census data

New state law


The 2018 Washington Voting Rights Act provides new state law requirements for city council districting.
 

Other cities


Other large, charter cities that have established wards or districts:
 
  • Aberdeen - 12 councilmembers: 2 each from 6 wards
  • Bellingham - 7 councilmembers: 1 at-large, 6 wards
  • Bremerton - 7 councilmembers: 7 districts
  • Seattle - 9 councilmembers: 2 at-large, 7 districts
  • Spokane - 6 councilmembers: 2 each from 3 districts
  • Tacoma - 8 councilmembers: 3 at-large, 5 districts
  • Yakima - 7 councilmembers: 3 at-large, 4 districts
Some information on this page has been obtained from MRSC (Municipal Research and Services Center). Full text and additional information can be found on their website.