Chosen students from local schools will have their voices heard by city officials.

Milton City Council began taking steps into establishing a new youth council following the city’s executive committee meeting Monday night. The council voted unanimously to establish the council consisting of three students each from Avalon, King and Hobbs middle schools and four students from MiltonHigh School. Bringing the total of 13 students.

The LEAP Committee recommendation will be on the consent agenda for Tuesday’s regular council meeting.

Previously, the council voted in favor of re-establishing the youth council, which allowed students to receive insight on how local governments operate as well as being involved with community events.

After speaking with administrators with the Santa RosaCountySchool District, Council member and LEAP chairwoman Mary Ellen Johnson said the initiative would benefit to middle school curriculum which requires students to take a civics course before entering high school.

In addition to thanking Johnson for reviving the youth council, Mayor Wesley Meiss said the youth council can also promote city involvement to area youth.

 “This is going to integrate civics into the curriculum, but I think it will also (encourage) students to invest into their city and they are going to have ownership,” Meiss said.

Johnson added the youth council will be able to meet with and speak to elected officials as well as visit and meet city officials and departments.   

“These students will also have the benefit of actually seeing what they are doing,”  Johnson said.

In a previous interview, Milton High School Principal Tim Short believes the youth council will also allow students to share their ideas with elected officials.

“It’s allowing them some input in throwing out ideas to our local council members that may initiate some things from a different perspective,” Short said. “(Youth) are more in tuned with a younger generation.”

Short previously spoke to student leaders in the SGA about potentially being involved in a youth council. The students response was favorable, Short said.

 “They seem interested from the standpoint of maybe having a voice and seeing how things work,” he said.

Short was also in favor of supporting the city’s specialized council in any way possible.

 “Anything thing that is going to help grow the community and the City of Milton, then I am all for (it).”