Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Tag: budget cuts


HUNGER: State cuts target children of color

In 2012, FISH Food Banks of Pierce County served 556,298 individuals, or 140,414 families in Pierce County that faced significant financial hardships, an increase of 24 percent in just one year.

Washington State Food Assistance is vitally important to meeting this growing need. For more than 15 years, Washington has wisely and strategically leveraged national resources to ensure that food stamps reach families that need it most.

However, during the recession, State Food Assistance was slashed for thousands of children growing up in immigrant families, nearly all of whom are children of color. At a time when an estimated one in

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TACOMA: Base layoffs on merit, not seniority

After six years of city hall activism for improved bike and pedestrian facilities in Tacoma, what gripes me most about the looming layoffs? The process – about which I admittedly know very little – whereby employees with perhaps a year or even 10 years seniority are able to push out highly qualified, meritorious and very specialized junior personnel.

In my humble opinion and with all due respect, this is not the sort of system that will enable our municipality take a step up. Tacoma can’t hope to compete on a national or even a regional basis for businesses looking to

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TACOMA: Don’t cut essentials

As a victim of a violent crime, I find these layoffs to be unacceptable. There are plenty of other ways to trim the fat from Tacoma’s budget. Firemen and policemen should be one of the absolute last things affected by this economy.

Maybe first they should consider eliminating all banquets, luncheons, parties, out-of-town business trips, bonuses, city-provided vehicles and holiday decorations throughout the city, 5 to 10 percent pay cuts for everybody, switching to cheaper office supplies/tools, and not wasting tax dollars on ridiculous parking meter systems that deter commerce downtown.

This stuff is not rocket science. Maybe they should print

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TACOMA: Cuts set city back 20 years

My late husband was one of the primary architects of Community Oriented Policing in Tacoma. He gave hundreds of personal hours away from his family in the evenings to attend community meetings, selling and implementing this plan.

As community liaison, school resource, gang unit, traffic, vice and narcotics officers are returned to primary response duties, substations closed, and relationships with the FBI and DEA joint task forces obliterated, I am more than dismayed that a lack of foresight on the part of City managers will result in the demise of proactive policing, which has had a proven benefit for nearly

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TACOMA: City Hall didn’t see cuts coming?

Why the sudden loss of revenue, was this not on the horizon? How can the city of Tacoma not have had prior warning. Who is watching the hen house?

These cuts will undue millions of dollars in investment into public safety. Let us now close the police substations, let us not curb gang violence, no traffic enforcement at school zones.

It will take Tacoma a decade to recover its losses in trained, expert public safety employees. I would ask the council representitives to explain how the financial director let this happen. Who is responsible?

Maybe it’s time to clean house

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BUDGET: State is most tax-burdened in country

As our state legislation convenes for a “cuts only” effort to balance the biennial budget, the most vulnerable residents of our state will continue to pay a disproportionate percentage of the tax burden.

Washington is already the 35th most disproportionate tax-burdened state in the nation. Governor Gregoire’s suggested increased sales tax would further burden our struggling populations.

The “cuts only” budget does not bat an eye when millions of dollars are granted for Wall Street banks, private jets, trade show display items, cosmetic surgery, and other glaring loop holes. However, the magnifying glass is used to scrape every possible cent

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BUDGET: Line has to be drawn somewhere

Re: “Cuts already have been devastating” (letter, 12-2).

The vast majority of individuals with HIV/AIDS have engaged in high-risk behavior involving sexual activity or illicit drug use. Ignorance is no excuse as
the risks are common knowledge.

To engage in these activities is a personal choice. Of course, we all have the right to make choices, but we don’t always choose the consequences. Infected individuals are in a difficult spot brought on by their own choices and related actions.

This raises a difficult moral socio-economic and ethical question. Should taxpayers be put in the position of paying for

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BUDGET: Cuts already have been devastating

As the executive director of AIDS Housing Association of Tacoma (AHAT), I see daily how the cuts already implemented within our state have left social services bleeding and weakened. Further cuts will diminish our state’s ability to help its most vulnerable citizens as they fall through the holes of our shrinking safety net.

We are facing increased challenges in serving our clients due to decreases in adult dental care, Medicaid and Disability Lifeline. For AHAT’S clients, many of whom are disabled and unable to work, these cuts have been devastating.

At a recent town hall meeting with Department of Social

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