Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Tag: tacoma city council


TACOMA: Use sales tax to fix city’s potholes

The city of Tacoma has proposed to raise taxes on utilities in an effort to repair the cities pothole problems. While I applaud the council’s efforts to address one of several infrastructure problems, the new tax is not the correct way to go about this.

Like other taxing authorities, Pierce Transit reported an increase of 11 percent this quarter over last. The revenue came primarily from an increase in sales tax revenue, as the economy continues to mend.

This increase in sales tax revenue should be reflected in the city’s budget as well. Using the extra sales tax revenue and

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TACOMA: Biweekly trash plan a big mess

The City of Tacoma intends to take its “pilot program” for garbage collection live beginning in March. Service will change from weekly pickup to every other week (TNT, 2-5). By November, following a phased-in approach, all 53,200 city customers will be affected by this change. Garbage will now sit at our homes for two weeks instead of one (longer over holidays).

Not only does this raise health and sanitation concerns, but this 50 percent reduction in service comes with no corresponding reduction in fees. We will continue to pay the same as before (larger can

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TACOMA: City Council lacks business acumen

The citizens of Tacoma are not well served by the City Council. Recent news items highlighting the obvious lack of fiscal responsibility of this Council should be very disturbing to every Tacoma resident.

We are led to believe that the loomimg budget crisis was impossible to forecast. The Council also wishes us to accept that the crisis in the parking enterprise fund was not predictable at the time the city agreed to extensive debt service increases.

Our City Council is primarily responsible for fully understanding the funding implcations of all decisions made, yet this council is consistently reactive, rather than

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TACOMA: Smitherman for City Council

I recently spent time talking with Karen Smitherman, who is running for Tacoma City Council. As a former teacher myself, we shared our concern for our children’s education and general welfare in an age which demands excellence more than ever from our schools and local communities. Karen has the experience and the compassion which are so necessary in helping the City Council make the wisest decisions affecting the future of our young people. Please allow her voice to take its place on the Tacoma City Council November 8.


TACOMA: Ibsen offers real solutions

Re: “Smitherman is better council choice” (letter, 10-20).

I voted for Anders Ibsen because he’s the only candidate who’s serious about fixing our streets, and the only candidate with the honesty to tell us how exactly he’ll do it.

The letter writer seems oblivious to the infrastructural investments our city needs. Driving over the potholes in my neighborhood has cost me hundreds in vehicle repairs.

Let’s get real: Karen Smitherman and Anders Ibsen are both Democrats. According to The News Tribune (Our View, 10-10), “Both are smart, active in local Democratic politics, and likely to vote very similarly

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TACOMA: Ibsen, Smitherman show welcome civility

An adverb in the front-page story (TNT, 8-17) about the Tacoma City Council primary election used a word that is rare in political discourse about opposing candidates today: “fondly.”

Yes, Anders Ibsen and Karen Smitherman know and respect each other, and they are both taking pains to keep their relationship grounded in human decency.

The voting public is so starved for civility among our political leaders and would-be leaders that we ought to shout out our affirmation from the rooftops about what is happening here in Tacoma: Two opponents are acknowledging each other’s strengths and good will and are

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TACOMA: Smitherman the clear choice for City Council

How many of my fellow Tacomans will be voting this week?

I’m just a few blocks out of the City Council Position 1 district in which my friend, Karen Smitherman, is a candidate. Unfortunately, I can’t vote for her, but I sure hope the voters in the district will.

Karen and I first met more than 20 years ago when we worked on a statewide initiative together. I was working in Olympia, and she was working here in Tacoma. We’ve been friends ever since. I admired how she worked well with so many different people in Tacoma and Pierce County.

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TACOMA: School board right to look in-house for next leader

The contrast in Tacoma is stark and instructive. The City Council follows conventional wisdom and spends $50,000 on a ”headhunter” consulting firm to find a new city manager. On the other hand, the school board has opened an in-house application process for the next superintendent (TNT, 8-7).

Having witnessed the results of consultant-driven searches in another context, I applaud the school board for this decision. The chief advantage of headhunters is that they can make discreet inquiries for qualified candidates who would not want their current employers they are seeking another job. Consulting firms, however, often engage in back-door deals

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