Inside Opinion

What's on the minds of Tacoma News Tribune editorial writers

NOTICE: Inside Opinion has moved.

With the launch of our new website, we've moved Inside Opinion.
Visit the new section.

Tag: Graham

Oct.
18th

Our endorsements in Pierce County Council races

This editorial will appear in Friday’s print edition.

At least three faces on the Pierce County Council will change after the Nov. 6 election, but the political makeup of the council is likely to remain roughly the same with Republicans outnumbering Democrats. The only question is whether the GOP majority is 5 to 2 or 4 to 3.

• The District 2 race won’t affect that equation; it’s between two Republicans – incumbent Joyce McDonald, a former state representative from Puyallup, and Jeffery Hogan, the mayor of Edgewood. The district also includes Sumner, Milton and Northeast Tacoma.

Hogan’s main issue with McDonald has been her strong support for creating a flood control district that could levy a small countywide tax aimed at preventing and mitigating flood damage. Given the vulnerability of so much of the district to a catastrophic flood, her position makes sense.

Hogan could be a viable candidate for this position in four years, when McDonald term-limits out. But for now, district voters should stick with the incumbent (they gave her 68 percent of the vote in the primary). She works hard for their concerns and deserves a second term.

Here are our endorsements in the other council races – all open seats:

Read more »

April
22nd

What’s real reason for withholding records in Powell case?

This editorial will appear in Monday’s print edition.

Despite strong circumstantial evidence in the December 2009 disappearance of Susan Cox Powell, authorities in West Valley City, Utah, never filed any charges against the only person they say they suspected: her husband, Josh Charles.

Now that he’s dead – having killed himself and his two young sons – there’s no good reason to withhold records related to the investigation. The Salt Lake Tribune has tried to get those records, but the West Valley City Council has refused to release them.

The Tribune’s request is legitimate. It is in the public interest to determine why authorities failed to take action against Josh Powell – which might have prevented the February murders of 5-year-old Braden and 7-year-old Charlie in Graham. And the newspaper could look into whether taxpayer money was responsibly spent in the two-year investigation.
Read more »

Oct.
12th

Our choices for Bethel and Clover Park school boards

This editorial will appear in Thursday’s print edition.

Compared to all the drama in the Tacoma and Puyallup school districts lately, things have been quiet in Pierce County’s third- and fourth-largest districts, Bethel and Clover Park.

Even so, voters in the two suburban districts should not overlook important school board races Nov. 8 that involve challenges to three solid incumbents.

• In Bethel, District 4 incumbent Joy A. Cook is seeking her fifth term. There’s a chance that, if elected, the Graham resident would not be able to finish her term because she could be moving out of the district.

Read more »

July
31st

Roundup of our endorsements

The following are News Tribune editorial board endorsements in the Aug. 16 primary. An asterisk (*) denotes an incumbent. A double asterisk (**) denotes an incumbent by appointment. Names are listed alphabetically in dual endorsements.

To read the endorsement editorials, go here.

Tacoma City Council
District 1: Joe Atkinson

Tacoma School Board
Position 3: Dexter Gordon
Position 5: Karen Vialle

Puyallup City Council
At-large: Nicole Martineau and Steve Vermillion
District 1, Position 2: John Hopkins

Puyallup School Board
Position 2: Therese Ngo Pasquier

Sumner City Council
Position 4: Jon Swanson**

University Place

Read more »

March
8th

Looking for homes in all the wrong places

This editorial will appear in tomorrow’s print edition.

As a reality check on hopes for growth management, the new census numbers are roughly the equivalent of a whack on the head with a two-by-four.

The still-crucial goal of the 1990 Growth Management Act was to channel the state’s expanding populations into areas that were already urbanized or suburbanized. The idea was to protect farmlands, wetlands and critical wildlife habitat – and not so incidentally, the taxpayers’ pocketbooks.

Uncontrolled growth – letting suburban development overrun the countryside in every direction – is a guarantee of wasteful government spending on a stupendous scale.

Orting is a good example. Pierce County and the city’s own officials have allowed it to grow rapidly over the last two decades. The problem is, you can only get to and from the Orting area on a two-lane road – which is now routinely jammed.

Major road and other infrastructure projects siphon fortunes out of the public treasury, fortunes that might be saved if growth were contained to areas that already had roads and other urban infrastructure.

But it’s been obvious for years that the state’s attempts at growth management were in trouble. The 2010 Census shows how much trouble.

The big and middling-sized cities where most newcomers were supposed to live have been growing far more slowly than Puget Sound’s planners hoped for, the census confirms. Lakewood actually shrank over the last decade, as did much of Tacoma.
Read more »