Issues and Priorities

After ten years on the City Council carefully crafting legislation to improve our town, Ryan knows the issues. He's eager to roll up his sleeves and get to work fixing problems from the mayor's office. Please feel free to reach out with questions and ideas!

For more reading, check out these pages:


Preserve our Small-Town Character

The story of Anacortes is one of constant change—from the canneries and pulp mills to today’s working waterfront, world-class educational system, and vibrant arts community. While our new zoning code is a tremendous improvement, we need to keep tweaking it to ensure we:

  • preserve our friendly and inclusive small-town feel
  • allow development at appropriate scale, which means not putting five-story buildings in the middle of neighborhoods
  • effectively handle traffic
  • address homelessness and housing affordability
  • provide opportunities for our arts community to thrive
  • protect our neighborhoods, forestlands, and shorelines

Fix Our Streets

Despite good progress improving our arterials, we have a long way to go to fix the residential streets that every neighborhood ought to be able to take pride in. We need to:

  • fix our deteriorating pavement
  • pave our old gravel streets
  • finish our sidewalks and wheelchair ramps
  • add traffic calming devices where needed

Ryan is well aware of the immense cost of street projects, and it'll take innovation to ensure it's affordable. But it's time to make it happen.


Invigorate Commercial Avenue and Link to the Waterfront

Commercial Avenue could use a shot in the arm. Ryan firmly believes in the viability and value of small business in Anacortes and will work hard for its success. Small businesses are essential not only to ensure regular people can make a living in Anacortes, but also to our community and sense of place. He will:

  • bring more activity downtown through street enhancements, outdoor dining, and events
  • provide new parking and improve what we have (no more back-in angle parking!)
  • convene regular City-led meetings of downtown businesses to hear ideas, get feedback, and address concerns
  • ensure Anacortes residents are connected to local businesses so they know what they can purchase right here in Anacortes (rather than driving over the bridge!)

Ryan will focus on building downtown walkability and the long-discussed connection to the marina so that residents and tourists alike will be encouraged to get out of their cars, enjoy island community and its natural beauty, and participate in our local economy.

Dollars Squeeze

Tighten Our Belts

We need to lower the cost of living in Anacortes, especially for our struggling families and seniors on fixed incomes. Anacortes has big infrastructure projects on the horizon to maintain our quality services. We need those projects to maintain our infrastructure—but tightening our budgets, working smarter, and cutting unnecessary expenses is the right way to ensure we can afford these projects without raising taxes.


Reform and Transform City Government

Ryan will transform the way the City does business for better performance, transparency, and communication. He'll deliver results like:

  • first-class maintenance of our parks, facilities, and streets
  • dynamic, two-way communication with your City government
  • new tools to report a pothole, reserve a campsite, participate in a public hearing and more from your home or an app on your phone
  • transparent and understandable insight into City business and finances
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copyright © 2021 Ryan Walters