Port Angeles City Council mulls whether to elect new mayor

PORT ANGELES — Will the Port Angeles City Council vote for continuity and re-elect Karen Rogers to a second two-year term as mayor?

Or will the North Olympic Peninsula’s biggest city have a new mayor?

The seven City Council members will elect the mayor and deputy mayor for 2008-09 in a vote before the public at their first meeting of the new year.

The meeting begins at 6 p.m. Tuesday in council chambers at City Hall, 321 E. Fifth St.

The mayoral job is a largely ceremonial position since City Manager Mark Madsen runs the day-to-day operations.

But council members still lobby their colleagues for the job because the mayor chairs the council meetings, is considered the public face of the city and plays a large role in shaping the council’s agenda.

Both the Sequim and Port Townsend city councils have elected new mayors for 2008.

Rogers, who was elected mayor in January 2006 after winning re-election to the council for another four years in the November 2005 general election, says she would be “more than honored” to stay as mayor.

But Gary Braun, 70, who has been mayor and deputy mayor in the past and who is retired from careers as a firefighter and U.S. Customs officer, is being mentioned around City Hall as having a good chance in replacing Rogers, 49.

The two have occasionally differed on city issues.

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