Tomorrow’s scheduled meeting of the Select Committee on Homelessness and Housing Affordability has been cancelled. The meeting was intended to continue — and perhaps conclude — the confirmation hearings for Jason Johnson’s appointment as Director of the Human Services Department.
Johnson’s nomination has been controversial to say the least, as several stakeholders have questioned the Mayor’s lack of a transparent process leading up to her nomination of Johnson. And stakeholders — including HSD employees and human services providers — have been split between those who support his nomination and those who oppose it. Council member Kshama Sawant attempted to send the nomination back to Mayor Durkan for a do-over, but failed to gain the support of her Council colleagues. Instead they voted to take the nomination out of her committee and refer it to the Select Committee, in order to move it forward through hearings and a vote.
Despite multiple inquiries, the Council has not provided any explanation for why tomorrow’s meeting was cancelled. It also has not announced a new date for the meeting, or new expectations for when the Council might take a final vote on confirming Johnson’s appointment.