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He hopes to help residents connect better with City Hall, he said, as they sit down with a mug of coffee twice a month and express their concerns about the city, ask questions about the city's governance or just chat with the city's leader.
“I know many of our residents enjoy a good cup of coffee in the morning, including myself, so it seems like a natural venue and opportunity for myself and the city to reach out to folks in our community,” Hays said.
His first coffee session will be at Adagio Bean & Leaf, 981 E. Washington St., at 7:30 a.m. Thursday.
The second session will be at Adagio on Sept. 19.
Moving forward, the mayor's coffee klatches will be twice a month at coffee shops, with locations and dates published at the beginning of each month.
Hays said he got the idea from Mount Vernon Mayor Jill Boudreau, who has success with coffee sessions in her Skagit Valley city.
As Sequim grows, Hays worries residents are becoming removed from their local government.
“I read once that a disconnect begins to occur when a community grows over a population of 5,000,” Hays said.
“This is the tipping point where individuals no longer feel like they know someone who knows someone at City Hall.
“I want to give our community the opportunity to stay connected.”
For more information, contact Hays at 360-460-6231 or firstname.lastname@example.org.