The City Council is the legislative branch of Newcastle city government and is the chief policy-making body.
The role of the City Council is to establish policies and to enact ordinances and resolutions that are deemed to be in the best interest of the City. The City Council hires a City Manager to ensure that the Council's policies, ordinances, and resolutions are implemented.
The policy-making work of the City Council is aided by the Parks Commission and the Planning Commission. Members of those commissions are recommended by the Mayor and confirmed by a majority of the Council.
How are they elected?
The City Council is composed of seven persons elected by the registered voters residing within the corporate limits of Newcastle . Each non-partisan Councilor is elected at-large to a four-year term. All seven positions on the Council are considered part-time, and often members of the City Council have employment apart from the City.
Every two years, the City Council itself elects a Mayor from among its seven members. The role of the Mayor is to preside over City Council meetings and at attend to the ceremonial duties of the City (see RCW 35A.13.030). The Council itself also elects a Deputy Mayor every two years, who serves as the Mayor in the absence of the Mayor. The Mayor, Deputy Mayor, and City Councilors often attend regional, State-wide, or even national meetings as representatives of the City of Newcastle to help shape policies or responses to items whose scope or significance effects but goes beyond the boundaries of the City alone.