The first of what is planned to be an annual event to promote the work of—and recruit for—various Washington County boards and commissions is scheduled for Thursday, October 19 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Washington Street Conference Center in Hillsboro.
Washington County is, at the top, governed by an elected board of commissioners. Below them, more than two dozen advisory boards and commissions made up of regular citizen volunteers who advise them on decisions ranging from how to run the Washington County Fair to when and where to put gravel on rural county roads.
Some commissions even have decision-making authority on their own, such as the Planning Commission, which “makes final land use decisions for some plan amendments,” according to an online listing of all 33 boards, commissions, committees, councils, and other bodies that are connected in some way to how the county is run.
“Learn about what they do and how to apply,” a notice from the county’s Office of Equity, Inclusion and Community Engagement read.
A look at the current vacancies, or positions that will become vacant between now and January on various boards shows that more than half of the county’s boards and commissions have at least one vacancy or will soon thanks to terms ending.
A closer look shows people in the rural western Washington County area already providing input into the governance of their county, such as Banks’ Loren Behrman, a member of the Rural Roads Operations and Maintenance Advisory Committee (RROMAC) who also serves on the city of Banks Planning Commission. Gales Creek’s Eldon Jossi spent years on the same board, but is no longer a member, according to the county website (You can still find him representing parts of Gales Creek, Dilley, Gaston, and Cherry Grove in Zone 2 on the Tualatin Soil and Water Conservation District, a separately elected board of directors).
Vacancies currently exist on a number of boards that may be of interest to local readers, such as RROMAC, Advisory Council on Racial Equity (ACRE), the Aging and Veteran Services Advisory Council (which has seven vacancies right now), the Farm Board of Review, and more.
Find out more about the boards and how to apply online, or at the Oct. 19 event.
The Washington Street Conference Center is located at 102 SW Washington St., Hillsboro.