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Seattle Voters' Guide  

Seattle Form of Government

Seattle is a Charter City with a Mayor-Council form of government. The Mayor is directly elected by the voters and most executive departments report to the Mayor. There are nine City Councilmembers, all of whom are elected at-large. The only other elected position is the City Attorney, who is also elected at-large. The regular term of all offices is four years.

Candidates for these offices must be U.S. Citizens, registered voters in the City of Seattle at the time they file their declaration of candidacy, and able to read and write the English language.

All City office elections are non-partisan, which means the top two vote-getters in the primary election are placed on the general election ballot. This is true regardless of whether or not one candidate received a majority of the primary vote. If two people or less file declarations of candidacy for any of these offices, that office does not appear on the primary election ballot, but does appear on the general election ballot. Parties do not nominate candidates to appear on the ballot and the ballots do not identify the candidates by party. Parties can and do endorse and support certain candidates, but play no other role in nominating candidates or determining who is placed on the primary or general election ballot.

Ballot issues may appear on your ballot in the primary, general or special election. Those issues are decided in the election where they appear.


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