Seattle City Council Voter Guide: District 4

Oct 16, 2019, 8:46 AM

There’s a major upheaval expected on Seattle City Council in 2019. Seven out of nine council seats are up for grabs, leaving the door wide open for some new faces. To get you familiar these faces — new and old — we’re breaking down candidates in each council race, including District 4, spanning the University District, Fremont, Eastlake, and Ravenna.

Alex Pedersen (40.4 percent of votes in August primary)

Alex Pedersen
Council candidate Alex Pedersen. (Alex Pedersen for City Council, District 4)

The basics: Pedersen was a legislative aide to former Seattle City Councilmember Tim Burgess. He also worked as a special assistant to Secretary Andrew Cuomo in the U.S. Department of Housing during Bill Clinton’s second term as president.

The issues: Like many candidates running for council across Seattle, one of Pedersen’s major focuses is homelessness, vowing to focus his attention on solutions that have proven successful in other cities. He also pushes for greater support of the city’s police officers, continued support for the Seattle Housing Levy, improvements to Mandatory Housing Affordability, and optimized transportation to get people to and from light rail. He is opposed to congestion tolling and safe injection sites.

Major endorsements: The Seattle Times, Tim Burgess, Washington State Sen. Reuven Carlyle, Alliance for Gun Responsibility. Full list here.

If elected, what will be your priorities for your first 100 days in office for the next council term?

With my public service experience, private sector skills, and knowledge from listening to voters on every block, I’ll hit the ground running — unlike my opponent. To reduce HOMELESSNESS, I’ll ensure Council approves an effective regional authority. To increase PUBLIC SAFETY, I’ll encourage officers to engage in proactive community policing.

Pedersen campaign website

Shaun Scott (23.3 percent of votes in August primary)

Shaun Scott
Council candidate Shaun Scott. (Scott District 4)

The basics: Scott previously was an editor for Real Change News, as well as a field staffer for Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal. He also worked as a filmmaker and author, creating a 2009 documentary entitled Seat of Empire: Seattle Since 1909.

The issues: Scott advocates for “a compassionate city,” with one of his primary planks revolving around improvements to public housing. That includes a proposed tax on mansion sales and vacant luxury real estate developments, and the construction of new affordable housing options. He also supports a reworking of the city’s tax code, labeling its sales and property taxes as “regressive.” He’s a staunch supporter of Green New Deal initiatives, municipal broadband, congestion tolling, and safe injection sites. He opposes low taxes on big businesses and an expanded police department.

Major endorsements: The Stranger, Seattle City Councilmember Mike O’Brien, King County Democrats. Full list here.

If elected, what will be your priorities for your first 100 days in office for the next council term?

First, I plan to officially recognize the Duwamish people, repeal the prostitution loitering ordinance, and establish an in-district constituent services office. Then I will build up the political will and relationships necessary on the council to implement a Seattle Green New Deal, progressive tax code, and build public housing.

Scott campaign website

Past MyNorthwest Seattle City Council Voter Guides: 

District 1: Lisa Herbold and Phil Tavel

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Seattle City Council Voter Guide: District 4