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Category: King County


Safeco Field taxes bill finally drops with money shifting to arts, housing and convention center expansion

King County Executive Dow Constantine has been preparing a bill that would divvy up some of the taxes that are now paying off the bonds for Safeco Field. But it too until Day 40 of the session for an actual bill to surface.

If a bill doesn’t pass this session, the taxes expire when the bonds are retired, probably sometime in late summer.

House Bill 1997 by Des Moines Democrat Tina Orwall would divide up the half-cent food and bar tax and two chunks of car rental taxes, both collected only in King County. The money would go to 4Culture ( a King County public development authority that funds various arts, culture and heritage institutions) to low-income housing and to a new fund to pay for tourism-related projects in the Pioneer Square and International District neighborhoods near the baseball and football stadiums.

Russ Carmack photo, 2004

Finally, some of the money _ actually quite a bit – would help pay for an expansion of the Washington State Convention and Trade Center in Seattle.

Here’s a PDF of HB 1997. Read more »


Miloscia appears headed for re-election

Rep. Mark Miloscia, D-Federal Way, was winning against Federal Way Republican Shawn Sullivan, a project manager for the Sabey Corp., in the race for 30th District House Position One.

Miloscia was among South Sound Democrats from swing districts who voted against the main tax package approved by the Legislature.

In his campaign, Sullivan opposed the Legislature’s solutions to the budget shortfall and said Miloscia was part of the problem.

But Miloscia was leading, just as he did in the primary.


Two Republicans ahead of Democratic incumbents in 47th District

Two Democratic incumbents were trailing Republicans in the 47th District.

In the Senate race, Republican Joe Fain of Covington was winning in his bid to unseat Sen. Claudia Kauffman, D-Kent.

Fain works as chief of staff for the King County Council. Kauffman works as charity fund liaison for the Muckleshoot Tribe of Indians.

For House Position One, Covington Republican Mark Hargrove was unseating Rep. Geoff Simpson, D-Covington.

Hargrove is a Boeing instructor pilot who campaigned against tax increases.

Simpson is a full-time firefighter. He leads the House’s local government committee and voted against the new taxes approved by the Legislature.

Simpson lagged behind Hargrove in the primary. Simpson’s poor showing then came after he was charged with assault; Simpson maintained the accusations by his ex-wife were politically motivated.

For House Position Two, a Democractic incumbent bucked the district’s trend and was ahead.

Rep. Pat Sullivan, D-Covington, was winning against Republican Rodrigo Yanez of Renton.

Read more »


Roach ahead and Bunney trailing in 31st District races

Sen. Pam Roach, R-Auburn, was winning and Pierce County Councilman Shawn Bunney was trailing in races in the 31st District.

Roach was wining a challenge within her own party by Sumner City Councilman Matt Richardson.

During a hotly contested Senate campaign, both candidates said marks on their reputations are the work of political opponents.

For House Position One, Republican Cathy Dahlquist was leading Bunney, also a Republican. He is a term-limited Pierce County Councilman.

Dahlquist, an Enumclaw School Board member, and Bunney faced off to fill the position vacated by Rep. Dan Roach, R-Bonney Lake, who is running for Bunney’s

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Priest will run for Federal Way mayor, leaving the Legislature


Rep. Skip Priest has decided to enter the race to become Federal Way’s first elected mayor.

Priest, R-Federal Way, said he made the decision Monday and won’t be running for a fifth consecutive term as a representative from the 30th Legislative District.

He joins three Federal Way City Council members who also have announced they’re running for mayor: Jim Ferrell, Linda Kochmar and Mike Park. They will face off in the Aug. 17 primary. The filing period is June 7-11.

Priest said Federal Way is a city in transition that needs clear direction. “There are times your community becomes a very important priority, and this is it,” Priest said.

“I believe it’s really important for all of us to work together and create a vision and implement it,” said Priest, 60.

Read more »


Husky Stadium renovation dealt a (potential) setback

A measure that some had hoped could steer public dollars toward a partial renovation of Husky Stadium was passed out of committee earlier this afternoon ahead of the cutoff for fiscal bills.

But the bill was amended to exclude funding for publicly owned stadiums and arenas. Members of the House Finance Committee voted the bill out on a 6-3 party-line vote.

Substitute House Bill 2912
would give King County the authority to decide what to do with its tourism-tax revenue after Safeco Field, Qwest Field and the Kingdome are paid off.

The proposal would

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Federal Way delays setting date for mayoral election

The Federal Way City Council has put off until Dec. 1 a decision on when voters will elect a mayor.

Council members decided Tuesday night to wait to hear from the Washington Secretary of State’s office about whether the city’s first strong-mayor election must be held within six months of Nov. 24.

On Nov. 3, voters opted to switch from the current council-manager form of government, but some ballots are still being counted. The official election certification is set for Nov. 24, which is next Tuesday.

City Attorney Pat Richardson said she and King County elections believe state law does

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Robertson defeating Morgan for Federal Way judge; strong mayor measure passing

Seattle prosecutor Rebecca Robertson was handily defeating Federal Way Municipal Court Judge Michael Morgan tonight.

In the race for Federal Way’s other judicial position, Judge Dave Larson was easily defeating lawyer and prosecutor Renee Walls.

Federal Way voters also were approving changing to a strong, elected mayor, according to early returns.

Morgan has been the focus of controversies surrounding how he managed court employees.

Robertson, a prosecutor in the Seattle City Attorney’s Office for the past six years, said during the campaign the court needed a new judge who would treat court staff members with integrity and that she was

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