Letters to the Editor

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MURRAY GATE: Use community momentum to plan for future

Letter by David G. Anderson, Lakewood on Sep. 16, 2010 at 2:11 pm with 3 Comments »
September 16, 2010 2:18 pm

The boat sank. Only the very-taught stern line kept it from going to bottom. It took several hours, ropes, beams and near-swear-words to raise and pump it out, only to return to find it ready to go under again.

It occurred to me that I could keep the pump going and the water leaving faster than it was entering, or I could fix the leak.

A friend of mine, in hearing of my plight, suggested that my boat problem was not unlike the Camp Murray gate problem.

We fought, and will hopefully win, this battle which, for the Tillicum community, would mean the gate goes somewhere else. Winning, however, by going to court – which is where this skirmish between the city and the military may be headed – can hardly be called a victory. “If you don’t like it, litigate it,” really means we’ve learned nothing and we will again be bailing out what should have been fixed.

The gate problem has served, if nothing else, to swing wide the doors of our community such that the team planning the opposition to the gate is more than 20 members strong, and growing.

Now we have the ship righted, we think, and once the repair is made some direction can be given to navigate our future. The repair requires better communication. The future depends on collaboration.

All hands on deck.

Leave a comment Comments → 3
  1. dankuykendall says:

    Hoping the judge tells you to stick it where the sun don’t shine. If you don’t like that the state is trying to make things better, sell out/leave the area!

  2. You know, there is one good part about parading Camp Murray traffic through the residential streets of Tillicum. Perhaps the presence of constant traffic will drive the drug trade indoors, out of sight.

  3. wa_govwatch says:

    Neighborhoods need to have more control over what happens in their own neighborhoods. This control can’t be given; it must be taken. To leave all planning solely to town hall staff is to abdicate personal and community responsibility to governmental agencies, and all control to someone else. Residents, then, are forced to accept what they have been given. Why did it take this gate issue to awaken Tillicum residents as to what town hall was quietly brewing for their quiet neighborhood? I’m afraid that some Tillicum residents are so fixated on repairing the very visible nail sized hole in the dam (or boat) that they are failing to observe the huge and growing fracture above it (or the rotted and damaged side panels in the boat). Absolutely, collaboration is essential in municipal planning, but collaboration without openness and transparency leads only to collaboration such as we find existed between town hall staff and Camp Murray staff; individual neighborhoods are ignored, and collaborative planning which is detrimental to the communities, and didn’t receive neighborhood buy-in, comes to fruition. The key to successful and smooth municipal planning is open and transparent collaboration between all parties concerned, and I emphasize the required open and transparent process. Perhaps Tillicum, and all neighborhoods, would benefit from an internal neighborhood planning advisory committee which would actively solicit local input regarding neighborhood projects, and provide local community buy-in and support upward from the grass-roots level. Relocation of the gate is only the short-term problem here; the long-term issue is responsible citizen involvement with open and transparent collaboration between government, communities and citizens. This is not easily obtainable because we have a secretive, arrogant and almost defiant town hall, and a complacent citizenry. This gate matter is far from being resolved, but in its resolution process, I hope that both town hall and our citizens take to heart that successful municipal planning must involve vitalized citizens in an open and transparent process.

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