We are in our periodic election season. I suggest that all of us take the opportunity to ask candidates for every elected office, regardless of political affiliation, “If elected, how will you increase accountability in government?”
We should expect direct, well-thought-out responses. If the response includes “you just don’t understand,” or something to that effect, without excellent clarification, that candidate should lose our vote.
Let us remind elected officials that “We, the people” do understand, and we expect an efficient and an accountable government. We may differ in our goals, but we should insist that government agencies and officials listen carefully to us and our wishes. They can and should be flexible while adhering to our core values.
We have had repeated examples of lack of transparency and responsibility in state agencies. The continuing controversy with the state Department of Transportation projects is an obvious example. The Interstate 5/state Route 16 interchange is a continuing series of errors and lack of responsibility.
We have also noted that our elected representatives appear to ignore what citizens have voted for. Just think about what our Legislature did this year and the comments of current Pierce County Council members.
We need to insist that candidates state their positions on issues of concern to us and that they will abide by our wishes or lose our support. At minimum we should expect common sense, reasonable compromise and open communication.