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Letters Archive

Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor
All letters must be signed by the author and include a phone number and address for verification. The Snohomish County Tribune will edit all letters for brevity, clarity and style.
Letters must be 250 words or less.

Authors may be published once every four issues.

Letters policy
The Tribune provides a general forum for pertinent local public comment, but the viewpoints published in letters to the editor do not carry any implied endorsement or fact verifications by the
Tribune.
Send us a letter: letters@snoho.com


No letters published in the May 24 Tribune

Letters to the Editor published in the May 17 Tribune:

Bob Heirman
He inspired us all

To the Editor:
Melanie Russell had an excellent article on Bob Heirman (May 3 Tribune), an extraordinary man who inspired all of us to do our best.

Ann Bjorneby
Everett


Urban planning
Progress shouldn’t hit pocketbook

To the Editor:
In response to Kari Zimmerman’s letter in your May 10th edition:
I guess I am “one of those people fighting tooth and nail” against our Snohomish city government when it comes to unnecessary tax hikes and wasteful spending. I guess I am “one of those folks that scream the loudest to squash any effort to increase the source of (city) revenue.” See my letter to the Tribune printed April 19th, “Property tax cap - Koster bill (HB1764) risks too-high tax hikes.”
For the record, in 2011, I supported the Transportation Benefit District sales tax increase of 0.2 percent to build the roundabout at 15th and Avenue D and opposed councilwoman Lynn Schilaty’s attempt to raise city property taxes without a vote of the citizens to keep Police Chief John Turner employed. 
In 2015, I strongly opposed city manager Larry Bauman’s and council’s idea of creating an Metropolitan Parks District to almost double city property tax revenue. It isn’t “strange” that well over two out of three city voters weren’t  bamboozled by the council and rejected the MPD.
Citizens should be aware of City Hall’s looming boondoggles, including wanting to spend millions at the Hal Moe Pool site and at the Carnegie properties at First and Cedar. 
The wants, wishes and desires of this current city government are insatiable.
If Ms. Zimmerman would like to increase city revenue and help local businesses at the same time, she should support the movement to require the City’s management team to live in Snohomish, not King County. 

Evangeline Loranc
Snohomish


Carnegie library
Turn it into a city archive library

To the Editor:
Thanks to new state legislation, the deed restrictions placed on the Carnegie property by its donor cannot be changed without a public hearing. 
The library property is limited to use as a free public library. That means No theater, No rental space, No admission charges, No removal of deed restrictions.
Government transparency is a problem in Snohomish, it is a problem that needs a solution. A public access Transparency Library would be a solution for Snohomish, about Snohomish.
The City Clerk is the librarian for all city documents, by-laws, permits, budget, contracts and archives. The Clerk’s office records and maintains the documents covered in the transparency component of open government.
The clerk’s office and archive could be relocated to the new Snohomish Transparency Library. This move would make records more easily available to the public. It would open up space at City Hall, hopefully delaying the need for rebuilding, moving or remodeling our historic City Hall. 
Remaining space could display our visual, written and oral history. This would create an educational library for schools, residents and visitors.
Transparency and open access to city documents, plans and actions is our right. 
The generous gift of the property is someone’s legacy, given with the sole intent of use for a public library. We owe it to the donor to honor this intent.

Colleen Dunlap
Snohomish



Letters to the Editor published in the May 10 Tribune:


Urban planning
History can be preserved with planning

To the Editor:
It’s strange that there are many people in Snohomish that are fighting tooth and nail against any kind of improvements that will keep our city a desirable place to live and raise families. It seems they are completely lacking understanding of the need to maintain city-owned property as well as support local businesses.
If 43 percent of the city budget comes from sales taxes and another large portion from utility taxes, it stands to reason that we need to encourage people to live and open businesses here. Much is made of the desire to maintain buildings and parks that are owned by the city, but the folks that scream the loudest want to do everything they can to squash any effort to increase the source of revenue to do so. It is absolute nonsense.
I personally am completely onboard with the idea that Snohomish preserve its place as a unique, historical small town. However, that cannot be accomplished by throwing a tantrum to fight every bit of growth. Growth is a part of life and it does not come without some change. The past can certainly be honored but only as part of a solid, thoughtful plan for the future.

Kari Zimmerman
Snohomish


Deed restrictions
H.B. 1959 is enforceable

To the Editor:
After a request from citizens interested in restoring all the deed restrictions at the historic Averill Field site, Snohomish Mayor Tom Hamilton discussed the request with his fellow councilmembers under New Business during the May 2nd meeting.
Councilwomen Guzak and Schilaty seemed to think a zoning change to “Parks” would trump the necessity for restoring the deed restrictions that were removed without a public due process hearing or even any kind of transparency for the citizens (now required by state Rep. Mark Harmsworth’s House Bill 1959 law).
Here’s a recent concrete example where zoning doesn’t trump deed restrictions:
The Stocker family granted the city 20 acres of floodplain, agricultural land for $500,000 with three deed restrictions:
1.  The city can’t prevent the Stockers from running their cattle and farm equipment across the land.
2.  Unless the city pays an extra $10,000, the Stockers will approve the name for the boat launch and/or park.
3.  The city can’t prevent the Stockers from using the acreage for overflow vehicle parking during soccer tournaments occurring across the road at Stocker Soccer.
So if the city rezones the land “Parks,” does that override the need for deed restrictions?  Of course not.
The logical conclusion is for the city to simply first restore all the deed restrictions removed at Averill Field and then ask the public via Harmsworth’s law if they want to remove the restored deed restrictions, giving the public the city’s compelling need and justifications.
That is being open, transparent, and ethical.

Judy Kirkland
Snohomish


Deed restrictions
Thank you Rep. Harmsworth

To the Editor:
Many thanks to Representative Mark Harmsworth for spearheading legislation that promotes transparency by requiring municipalities to hold a hearing prior to the removal of protective covenants on public properties. This new law is a direct result of the Snohomish City Council’s mismanagement of the 2015 cell tower fiasco. 

Carey Clay
Snohomish


No Letters to the Editor published in the May 3 Tribune


Letters to the Editor published in the April 26 Tribune:

Future mayor's salary
Making wage low is sabotage

To the Editor:
According to an article in the local daily newspaper, the elected strong mayor will be paid $18,000 per year.  Yet, in an email the same day from the supervisor in the Elections Dept. in the Snohomish County Auditor’s Office, she reported the City informed her to set the elected mayor’s salary at $8700.  The candidate’s filing fee is 1 percent of the salary or $87.
The article reported city councilwomen Schilaty and Guzak were the most vocal councilmembers wanting a lowly paid, part-time mayor.
They feel Snohomish doesn’t have a talent pool to produce a full-time professional to run the city with 50 employees.  They also cite the requirement of the 2018 city budget due by Nov. 30th for setting the mayor’s salary now.  (Curiously, they didn’t mention the same budgetary requirement for setting the salary of the recently created City Administrator position that most certainly will be needed to complement the lowly paid, part-time mayor position.)
Fortunately, the 2018 city council can undo the sabotage inflicted by this council and give the elected mayor a full-time, commensurate salary.

Morgan Davis
Snohomish

Tuberculosis
TB patients need stigma reduced

To the Editor:
The news bite stating “County TB load is 23” (April 12 Tribune) caught my attention.  Behind these numbers are 23 people who likely need family and community support to help them through their treatment process. TB Photovoice.org, a Snohomish based organization, works locally, nationally and globally to connect and support persons impacted by TB.  Too often this disease makes people feel isolated, stigmatized and the side effects of the treatment can be a challenge to endure.  Yet, there are common themes expressed by people with TB. They want the community to be educated about TB so there is less fear and more compassion.  They want family, friends, and the medical community to support them as a person first not a patient.  If you know of someone with TB, educate yourself and let them know that there are people who have walked in their shoes that are here to help. 

Teresa Rugg
Director, TB Photovoice
Snohomish


Letters to the Editor published in the April 19 Tribune:


Ductless heat pumps
Suggested improvement didn't save on power bill

To the Editor:
This letter is for others like me who tend to purchase costly items without doing adequate research.
I have a small three-bedroom, one-bath house approximately 1,000 square feet built in 1971. The attic and crawlspace were insulated in the early 1980s. I had new electric baseboard heaters installed in 2010, plus two room air conditioners ($350 each).
I did not skimp. I kept my house comfortable; I had no complaints with my electrical charges but had heard how wonderful ductless heat pumps were, so in May 2015, I had one installed.
Yes, it is nice but no more so than my previous heating and cooling, and not much more economical to use. If I have the unit serviced yearly as recommended, I might save $100 a year in electrical heating costs. Also, you have a fan blowing constantly when in use. With my previous system a fan was only on during cooling.
I write this hoping to save someone from the same mistake I made. I guess the old adage “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it” fits well here.

Joan Keller
Snohomish


Property tax cap
Koster bill risks too-high tax hikes

To the Editor:
Republican State Rep. John Koster has co-sponsored House Bill 1764, which would increase the limit local governments can annually raise property taxes without voter approval from 1 percent to 5 percent.
I urge the citizens to contact their state legislators and tell them Koster’s HB 1764 is a bad idea. It would be a huge increase within just a few years because of compounding and appreciation. It would be a major burden on renters in general and especially on low-income renters since by law they are not eligible  for property tax discounts. Only eligible homeowners can get the tax break. 
Property taxes are much more regressive than capital gains taxes or even sales taxes. 
The 1 percent cap has worked just fine the last 10 years. If local governments want more money they can go to the voters and ask for it. 
Koster’s HB 1764 is a blank check without any accountability to the taxpayers. 

Evangeline Loranc
Snohomish


Tuberculosis
Work to get TB under control

To the Editor:
Thanks for reporting about tuberculosis in our county.  (News bites:  County TB caseload is 23 in April 12 Tribune).
Although these numbers are small in our county, tuberculosis remains the No. 1 infectious killer in our world. Although the number of deaths is dropping, more than one million people in our world die from TB each year.  The important part of the cure is for people to take the full course of the medicine. When that is not done, the disease can turn into drug resistant strains that are difficult and expensive to cure. Because this disease is airborne, it passes easily, and therefore must be treated globally. 
America has been doing their part through both the unilateral programs and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB, and Malaria.  This funding is threatened by current budget proposals that significantly cut America’s development assistance.  Our voices can turn this around.  Call, write, or visit your senators and representatives and ask them to fully fund this part of the budget (less than 1 percent of the total).  In that way we can help continue to get the TB pandemic under control.

Willie Dickerson
Snohomish


No Letters to the Editor published in the April 5 or 12 Tribunes

Letters to the Editor published in the March 29 Tribune:

Lord Hill Park
Bike trails should go elsewhere

To the Editor:
Lord Hill Regional Park is a wildlife oasis in the middle of what used to be rural area. The wildlife is being poisoned in Snohomish by rat poison D-Con. Owls are very useful in keeping the nature balance — one nesting pair can kill up to one thousand rodents. Now Snohomish owls are killed eating poisoned rodents.
Lord Hill Park in present form and intensity of use fulfills the need of both humans and animals. To make it a playground for mountain bikes would negatively affect this unique environment. Let’s build bike trails outside the park. Old Monroe-Snohomish Road needs a parallel bikeway, for example. Our environment is under stress. We need to preserve this diversity and beauty.

Jiri Janecek
Snohomish


Vandalism
Riverview student project destroyed

To the Editor:
We are fifth and sixth graders at Riverview Elementary on Fobes Hill. In November, our three classes started a field study where we were learning about birds/squirrels and their food preferences. As a part of this study, we set up eight feeders on our school grounds. Imagine our surprise when we went out to collect data March 22 and we found several smashed into many pieces.
We are heartbroken that our hard work, time, and money have been wasted. It is sad that someone felt that it was all right to go onto our school grounds and destroy something that has brought joy and experiential learning to our whole school. The feeders were located by our playground and the younger students enjoyed watching the birds and squirrels too. We pride ourselves on learning many different academic and life lessons at our school. Unfortunately, we learned what it feels like to be victims of vandalism.

The fifth and sixth grade students in Mrs. Cross,
Mrs. Spaetig-Peterson and Mrs. Lawless’ classes
Riverview Elementary
Snohomish


State budget
Reform tax code

To the Editor:
I am writing in response to the two-year state budget that Senate Republicans released this Tuesday, March 21. The budget cuts vital services in health care and other critical needs across the state, and does not raise the necessary revenue to fully fund needed programs, from education for our kids to funding infrastructure.
I encourage all of my legislators to instead do the budget the right way and vote to clean up our tax code, which is the most upside-down in the nation, causing low income people to suffer financially. A good start would be to close the loophole on capital gains, which is a tax on the profit of more than $50,000 per year on the sale of luxury investments. Closing this one loophole could raise close to a billion dollars per year — money that can be invested in a smart and healthy future for our communities.

Tiffany Kelly
Snohomish


Harvey Field
Airport can’t just declare it was first

To the Editor:
Regarding your March 22nd letter, “Harvey’s donations not factor in plans”:
As a property owner in west Snohomish city, I agree with the letter writer that rerouting Airport Way and lengthening the runway to accommodate larger aircraft and small corporate jets will lower property values at both ends of the runway.
Proponents of the runway expansion such as Mr. Robinette always use the tired old excuse “the airport was there first.”
It was Mr. Robinette who in 2012 got the City Council to pass a city letter of support pleading the County Council to allow commercial passenger jet service at Paine Field and divert general aircraft to smaller rural airports such as Harvey Airfield.
Here’s a little history:  In 1944, Eldon Harvey founded Harvey Airfield for small aircraft with an east-west runway configuration.  When state Route 9 opened in 1959, the runway changed to a north-south configuration.  Most homes at both ends of the runway were built well before 1959.
We are asked to be taxed to reroute Airport Way at a cost of millions only to lower the equity in our properties by 20 percent just to enrich one private, for-profit business.

Morgan Davis
Snohomish


Letters to the Editor published in the March 22 Tribune:


Marijuana vote timing change
Questions raised on changing date

To the Editor:
The City Council will discuss moving the public advisory vote on marijuana stores from November to August. (“Council ponders moving pot vote to August,” March 1 Tribune).
 The current proposed store location is within three blocks of Snohomish High School and just feet from private homes. It’s about 440 feet from a middle school bus stop and approximately 700 feet of Kla Ha Ya Park.
Council is sympathetic to the marijuana store licensee because he’s signed a lease before having been granted a license to open his prohibited business — a bold move. Seems he felt confident that the council was going to make this happen. He took a risk, which does have financial ramifications and requires patience. This was a risk he chose to take, knowing the vote would not take place until November.
 Council hopes to determine the rules surrounding this issue before the November vote — the same election in which five of them could be replaced. Perhaps before there will be a new mayor in town who will have an opinion on this issue. Is the vote being moved up in order to facilitate this for the shop owner because the players (council and mayor) may change? Valid reasoning for people to question the timing and motives.  
Please email the council and attend the March 21 meeting where they’ll be discussing this. Please note a location change — the meeting will be held at the Carnegie building on Cedar & Pearl (former library) Tuesday, March 21 at 7 p.m. Check the city website that day to confirm location.

Susan Bjorling
Snohomish


Garbage contract
Poor common sense used

To the Editor:
The new seven-year garbage contract is simply another example of the following: When public money is spent, common sense goes out the window.
Our Snohomish City Council knew 46 percent of the people  were not satisfied with their rates, versus 26 percent that were satisfied. Knowing this, they made no effort to provide us with a different provider, which may have lowered our rates. But to negotiate with a new garbage company, wasn’t that important.  Why? It wasn’t their money.
By now, we see the “spending pattern” wisdom of the Council. If you see this pattern, you can’t fix today’s  problems by re-electing those who created them.

Bruce Ferguson
Snohomish


Harvey Field
Harvey’s donations not factor in plans

To the Editor:
In response to Mr. Robinette’s letter (March 8 Tribune, “Unfair treatment given to Harveys in letter”), I would like to say that with him being involved with aviation over the years, I appreciate his opinion. On the other hand, these issues have absolutely nothing to do with how much money has been donated to our community by the Harvey family. It has to do with the quality of life for the residents on 111st Street and surrounding areas, and where the money is coming from.
According to a Snohomish real estate agent, a drop of 20 percent could occur and this is just one person’s opinion.
Who do you think will be paying for the alleged new elevated road?
Praising the Harveys for their contributions is admirable, however, it is not relevant to these issues. It boils down to who will be most affected, and those of us who will need to stand up for what we think is right.
Maybe you know more than we do and can enlighten us so we are more knowledgeable. As a resident of Snohomish, I certainly appreciate all that is done for this town and mean no disrespect to anyone. It is a great place to live and I hope it continues to be!

Aneene Potts
Snohomish


Letters to the Editor published in the March 15 Tribune:

Snohomish garbage contract
Choice to not go to bid bothersome

To the Editor:
Last year the City Council authorized the City Manager to negotiate a multi-year garbage contract extension with Allied Waste without even asking a competitor, Waste Management NW, to offer a lower bid through the open competitive bid process that other cities employ. For example, Monroe’s residents enjoy 20 percent lower rates than Snohomish for the same services from Allied Waste. 
The Snohomish City Manager justifies the no-bid contract by citing a recent city survey saying “most residents were satisfied with their garbage service.”
Yes, Allied Waste’s garbage truck drivers are competent, but so are Waste Management NW drivers. What the City Manager and the Council failed to mention was that the same survey indicated most residents were unhappy with the high costs of garbage collection shown on their bi-monthly utility bill. Apparently, this is the reasoning behind the city now separating Allied Wastes bill from the City’s water and sewer bill. (Allied Waste will directly bill residents quarterly while the city will continue its bi-monthly utility billing system).
The City Manager touts the “free” community clean-up at the city shop site every April as another reason for extending the no-bid contract with Allied Waste. Well, the $50,000 true cost is built into the garbage rates.
As a single mom with no pickup truck, I don’t think it’s fair that I have to subsidize homeowners who throw away large items when they can easily spend $20 at the county’s transfer station. 

Evangeline Loranc
Snohomish


Snohomish garbage contract
Author: City could have saved thousands by switching

To the Editor:
Dereliction of duty and/or double dealing? I have to stop attending Snohomish City Council meetings. My blood pressure can’t handle the ill-advised spending and atrocious lack of cost controls.
The city entered into a multi-year contract for garbage service without getting competitive bids.
As condo treasurer, I got a cost-saving, competitive bid for our garbage but the city won’t allow it. By my calculations, the city may have saved $200,000 a year ($1.4 million over seven years) if they had gotten a bid from Waste Management, instead of blindly re-signing with Republic Services. Ironically, that $200,000 would have paid the salary of the city manager who failed to get competitive bids. It would have taken Waste Management a day or two to write up a bid, while it took the city six months or more to decide which service to use. The city eventually based its decision on a survey suggesting citizens are satisfied with the garbage service, and some iffy regional cost comparisons.
It’s garbage. It isn’t rocket science. If you can save big bucks by switching to another qualified company, you do it. Parenthetically, Waste Management and Republic Services were both founded by the same man who imbued both companies with similar expertise in the fine art of garbage removal.

David Shedivy
Snohomish


Lowell-Snohomish River Road
Debris alongside road shameful

To the Editor:
I, like many, travel Lowell-Snohomish River Road every day to and from work. It is one of the most scenic roads in Sky Valley.  Unfortunately there has been a change, a change that cannot nor should be ignored. Those who know this route understand what I am about to share, as the debris and piles of garbage, the burnt-out cars; the homeless encampments are destroying this precious river route.  It has increased over the past year and continues to grow increasingly daily as a problem. 
I do not have to describe the carnage along this road as it is visually obvious and I do have empathy for those less fortunate. The question I have is how we as a civilized society allow people to live like animals and accept this. Laws are being broken here, environmental destruction from human waste into the river system, garbage piling up uncontrolled is surpassing acceptable limits. Right now it looks like a war zone with cars being dumped burnt out, trailers being discarded, encampments that look like a third-world slum. 
Why is the City of Everett and Snohomish not enforcing vagrancy laws? Why are the land owners allowing this to continue? Why is our City Council silent? If I was mayor of Snohomish, and I may just run, I know exactly what I would propose; I will see you all at the next council meeting March 21st.

John Lorenz
Snohomish


Letters to the Editor published in the March 8 Tribune:


Marijuana shop
Too close to SHS

To the Editor:
Concerning opening a pot shop on Avenue D and Second Street at the 76 gas station, in my opinion it is too close to Snohomish High School only 3 blocks away.

William Thomas
Snohomish


Harvey Field
Unfair treatment given in letter

To the Editor:
The Potts’ Feb. 1 letter to the regarding Harvey Field and slamming the Harvey family must be addressed. 
Most of their comments regarding airfield and aircraft operations are false and/or misleading and shows a complete lack of knowledge regarding aviation including funding.
The Harvey family and Kandy don’t deserve their accusations.  Very few can match the time, energy and dollars that have been given to our community by the Harveys.

Hank Robinett
Snohomish


City Council districts
Evenhanded story

To the Editor:
Thanks to Karen Law for her article on Everett City Council elections (March 1 Tribune). It was refreshing to read both sides of the issue so people can make an
informed decision.

Brenda Bolanos Ivory
Everett


No Letters to the Editor published in the February 22 or March 1 Tribunes

Letters to the Editor published in the February 15 Tribune:

Point in Time Count
Questioning the numbers

To the Editor:
I have a hard time trusting the numbers. According to an article in The Seattle Times dated January 31st the count of homeless students in the Everett School District is 1101. According to the Snohomish County Tribune article written on Feb. 1, the Point of Time Count of homeless people in the Everett area the count was 1188.
Both can not be correct. The only explanation is the “Definition of Homelessness” is different between the Point in Time and the Everett School District. Then I ask, why? I don’t know the answer but the Point in Time and the Everett School District needs to get together so when the numbers come out they are comparing apples to apples.

Steven Lay
Everett


Search and Rescue
A great team

To the Editor:
I am in southeast Washington and have deployed and trained with Snohomish County Search and Rescue (Feb. 8 Tribune cover story).
They are top notch not only in their local community but in their outreach across the state to other SAR Teams with training and support. They are a rock solid, life saving, committed group of volunteers.

Catherine Best
Pasco




Letters to the Editor published in the February 1 Tribune:


Traffic safety
Lowering Second Street speed limit uncertain to work

To the Editor:
Regarding Second Street traffic congestion (Jan. 25 Tribune): I saw a man halfway through a crosswalk, at dusk, wearing dark clothing, with a walker, and a car crossed right in front of him unseen.
Traffic has to move, people have to walk. Lowering the speed limit to 20 on Second Street might cause more traffic to move through all the historic district residential streets. I don’t think that will be acceptable. No one wants a bypass. Perhaps cross walk reflectors, flashing lights, lights on the street of the crosswalk, or the red crosswalk flags held in containers at each corner when someone has to cross, can help. Right now there’s nothing and there’s no place else to take traffic. People will do anything to avoid a slow down and that means alternative roads through town.

Mary Lena Fleisner
Snohomish


Lake Stevens library
Vote "yes"

To the Editor:
Over seventy years ago, Lake Stevens community members saw a need for a library and took action. A corner of a living room was the first library site. Researching library history, I found that every time more space was needed the community worked together as they did in 1949 when the library moved from Mrs. Gibbs’ home to Main Street.
It happened again in 1963 when volunteers built shelves, painted and readied the old Post Office for a spacious 700 square feet library.
The community continued to grow creating a need for a bigger library. Many, many people, businesses, and service groups came together donating their time, materials, and money to make a 2,400 square foot library a reality. In 1985, the library moved to its present location. It has served the community well in the ensuing years making the best of the small space.
Once again, Lake Stevens is in need of a larger library. While we no longer can grab a hammer or a paintbrush, we can vote to fund a new library.
Come together as a community and vote yes two times on the Feb. 14 ballot.

Ann Hoffmann
Lake Stevens


Letters to the Editor published in the February 1 Tribune:


Harvey Field
Plan would harm property values

To the Editor:
Regarding the expansion plan at Harvey Field:
Here I am again pleading my case against expanding the runway at Harvey Field. Let’s review the reasons “against” the plan:
1) Plummeting property values for those of us closest to the airport.
2) Additional flooding.
3) Higher taxes for Snohomish County.
4) Added dangers from larger and additional planes.
5) Higher noise level.
6) New construction or re-constructing Airport Way, really? Who is paying for a new road?
7) Snohomish County citizens contributing to the wealth of a “private” airport.
And the list goes on and on. I see only one reason “for” the plan and that is to add more wealth to Harvey Airport. I remind you this is a privately owned airport.
My hope is that people will get involved and see this for what it is: Tremendous financial gain for Kandace Harvey.
My husband and I are senior citizens happy living our life in Snohomish and we shouldn’t have to worry about this upsetting our way of life. I don’t want to be forced to sell my home. Our neighbors are not quitters, we will fight and believe me we are not going down easily. As Yogi Berra said, “It ain’t over ‘til it’s over!”

Michael and Aneene Potts
Snohomish


Highway 9
Why not widen it?

To the Editor:
They could save the $300,000 and just fix Highway 9 from Lake Stevens to Clearview (widen and eliminate lights).
For some reason, I don’t understand why in a state that has some of the biggest high tech companies in the world that WSDOT and municipalities are in the dark ages when it comes to analyzing traffic flow patterns, applying some common sense and fixing the roads. Either way, this area better get on it quickly because it’s only going to get worse with the increase in the region’s population.

Brad Booth
Snohomish


Gratitude
$5,860 raised

To the Editor:
The Board of Directors of the Snohomish Senior Center wish to thank both the members of the center and the general community for responding to a December request for financial support. Sixty-one people contributed amounts ranging from $10 to $1,000, for a total of $5,860. While these gifts are sincerely appreciated, they are part of an ongoing request for donations through individual and corporate contributions. This money is needed to maintain and enhance the programs and services of this nonprofit organization.

Robert Knight
Board member of the Snohomish Senior Center
Snohomish

No Letters to the Editor published in the January 25 Tribune

Letters to the Editor published in the January 18 Tribune:

Carnegie Building
Will city be on hook for all of it?

To the Editor:
Regarding the Jan. 11 article “City ramping up Carnegie remodel”: In 2006, the city granted the private Snohomish Carnegie Foundation, d/b/a “Carnegie Library and Education Center,” a 50-year lease at a dollar a year rent.  The Foundation was to privately raise $4 million to restore the property to its original 1910 splendor plus adding a new annex to the back of the 1910 building. This happened after Sno-Isle Library built a new $8 million library at Fourth and Maple.  (Its 5,000 square foot 1968 Annex was not large enough for its needs.)
The current tenant at the 1968 Annex is moving out.
The City Manager, as far as I can tell, hasn’t made public a formal, detailed cost analysis of renovating the annex for the new council chamber and meeting room.
The Foundation has posted signage listing seven phases of its master plan. Only the first phase is completed (a $1 million taxpayer grant to replace the Spanish tile roof and to seismically retrofit).
Reading the city wants to spend $230,000 in 2017 is a surprise.  Who’s really in charge? The city or the private Foundation?  Should it become a council chamber or an educational center? 
Will the city taxpayers end up paying for the $4 million final Carnegie Master Plan’s vision for the properties at First and Cedar?

Morgan Davis
Snohomish


Letters to the Editor published in the January 11 Tribune:

Councilman's exit
Reprimand Wilde

To the Editor:
Regarding Bruce Ferguson’s Jan. 4 letter in the titled “Council’s rush led to Wilde revelation”: I disagree with the main premise of his letter that former councilman Wilde being “outed” is the fault of only Mr. Wilde and that people will mistakenly view this as just another example of a poor relationship between City Hall and its citizens.
The Snohomish City Council has been run like a private club.
On Dec. 13, when a citizen asked the council “Where does councilman Wilde live?”, Mayor Guzak reflexively replied, “He lives in Snohomish.”  Prodded further by the citizen for a residence address, the mayor covered for Mr. Wilde by saying he doesn’t have to answer allowing Mr. Wilde to abruptly exit the meeting out the back door without being forthcoming and transparent to the citizen.
Later in the same meeting, Mr. Michael Whitney, one of Mayor Guzak’s partners in her $4,400 recount effort to overturn Proposition 2, made the startling and revealing statement about his attitude towards the citizens: “We are not in a position where we can have citizens governing themselves.”
Asking Mr. Wilde to return his salary won’t do much to change City Hall.  Only replacing five council members and electing a new mayor in November will “drain the swamp.”

Judy Kirkland
Snohomish

(Editor’s note: The Michael Whitney named is not the Tribune editor.)


Domestic policy
Group working to keep up safety net

To the Editor:
The recent election has left many people troubled and wondering what the future holds. The new administration has offered a hazy 100 day program for America.  
RESULTS.org, a nonprofit working to end hunger and poverty here and globally, is offering its own 100 day program to work to preserve safety net programs like SNAP (formerly food stamps) for the 1 in 5 children and their families who need this compassionate program to put food on the table.
RESULTS also works to battle disease by supporting America’s pledge to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB, and Malaria.  Saving the lives of 8 million people in our world and averting 300 million new infections is the promise of the next three years, if Congress funds America’s promise.
Find RESULTS on Facebook.

Willie Dickerson
Snohomish


Lake Stevens library
Vote yes for library

To the Editor:
Voters residing within the Lake Stevens School District will have the opportunity to show some love to their library on Valentine’s Day.  Two yes votes on the February 14th Election Ballot, one designating the Lake Stevens Library Capital Facilities Area, and the other a vote of support for a bond leading to the construction of a new library will complete bringing a new library to Lake Stevens.
I am pleased to see that half of the land acquisition cost, along with closing costs, was pledged up front by the Sno-Isle Board of Trustees. 
Amongst the many benefits of the proposed library I am most excited for is a large community room that will offer groups and organizations a place to meet. 

Paul Ryan
Lake Stevens


Letters to the Editor published in the January 4 Tribune:

Councilman's exit
Reprimand Wilde

To the Editor:
Apparently, another “grease fire” has surfaced with ex-councilman Zach Wilde being “outed.” No one is at fault, except Mr. Wilde. However, people will view this as just another example of the poor relationship between City Hall and the people of Snohomish.
Did Mr. Wilde break a law? City attorney Grant Weed will answer with a “yes” or “no.” However, Mr. Wilde did violate his oath, his obligation, his character and his duty. He practiced fraud.
That being the case, don’t you think the City Council would require him to return the money he was given to be on the council? I don’t believe the city will take any legal action (more bad press.)
Some type of reprimand is due. The people of Snohomish have a right to a fair and impartial City Council.

Bruce A. Ferguson
Snohomish


Councilman's exit
Council’s rush led to Wilde revelation

To the Editor:
Information concerning Zach Wilde not being a resident of the City of Snohomish surfaced from an injunction that was being filed to stop the City Council from rushing through three ordinances at a special City Council meeting Dec. 13.
The City Council was in a hurry to pass these three ordinances to enable them to control the wages of the new strong mayor, hire a city administrator and put forward a snap election. In other words even though they lost they were trying to control the outcome of the vote.
If Zach Wilde voted in Snohomish and voted on Proposition 2 then voter fraud may have occurred which would be a felony
offense.
“Transparency issues” between the Snohomish City Council and the citizens of Snohomish continue.

David Clay
Snohomish


No Letters to the Editor published in the December 28 Tribune

Letters to the Editor published in the December 21 Tribune:

Councilman's exit
Will city prosecute?

To the Editor:
Knowing now that Snohomish City Council member Zach Wilde was not a City of Snohomish resident as of April (which allowed him to vote on City of Snohomish policies when he should not have been able to), I have two questions: 1) Will the city be prosecuting Mr. Wilde for voter fraud? 2) If not, does that open up the city to some sort of negligence charges itself?

Jesse Podoll
Snohomish

Election costs
City talk on costs backed down

To the Editor:
All of this year the City Manager, Mayor, and rest of the council members opposed Proposition 2 every step of the way.
One of their main arguments was the primary and general mayoral elections would cost up to $50,000 each for a total of $100,000.
As late as the Dec. 5 council meeting, this was still the line peddled to the public for a quick vote on Dec. 13 for a filing deadline of
Dec. 21, claiming it was required by state law.
However, at the Dec. 13 council meeting, attorney Thom Graafstra, substituting for Grant Weed, made the revelation that state law clearly allows the two mayoral elections on the same day as the regular primary and general elections on Aug. 1 and Nov. 7, respectively, at no extra cost to city taxpayers. No wonder city voters approved Prop. 2. They simply do not believe or trust City Hall to be good stewards of their tax dollars.

Morgan Davis
Snohomish



 

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