Issues to consider during election season | Letter to the Editor

This is an election year. Here are some issues to consider:

1. Public employee contracts (PECs) should be negotiated in public so taxpayers know what unions ask for, what the city offers and the settlements.

The people who pay taxes to fulfill the contract obligations have the right to know. After all, private sector union contracts are negotiated publicly and so PECs should be also.

2. The process by which ordinances and resolutions are created, processed and approved by the council is a closed-loop system controlled by the council. City residents may attend committee meetings and might be heard if time permits. This is basically the only opportunity a citizen has to potentially influence an ordinance, except indirectly through elections every two years.

Citizens can speak for five minutes on each when the ordinance/resolution comes before the Committee of the Whole for a consensus vote to forward it to the full council and at the council meeting where council votes are taken. In either case, it’s basically too late for one to influence the outcome. If one wishes to influence either, start early in the respective committee and you might be heard.

3. Our City Council is throwing money at too many things instead of being more cautious and upholding its fiduciary duty, that is keeping a tight hold on the city’s purse strings.

Tukwila is not a regional government and should act like the small city we actually are. We give funds to other cities, to the Tukwila School District and other entities without the benefit of insisting on a return on investment. Why give any? Moreover, the city discriminates against other school districts that draw students from our city by not equally subsidizing those students like Tukwila students enjoy. Should boondoggles such as the National League of Cities and International County/City Management Association memberships be scrapped? Should our council be less social bent and more business oriented? Should less emphasis be on growing the city and more on governing, caring for and improving what we already have, and above all keeping taxes low?

We need to change the culture of our city, not gender or race related, but some City Council policies.

Suggested City Council motto: We tax and spend no end, if we’re short, we tax again.

— Bill Holstine

More in Opinion

Exciting news at the Tukwila Pool

The Tukwila Pool has some exciting things going on this spring you… Continue reading

Branching out into Tukwila

You may have noticed some new names in the paper last month… Continue reading

Let the buyer beware

Student enrollment season is in full swing in the Puget Sound, King… Continue reading

Tukwila School District gears up for 2018

Staff plans for second semester, summer school and next school year.

Discovering the truth behind federal tax cuts

Reporter columnist Chuck Parrish dives into the facts surrounding GOP tax cuts.

City Council should keep taxes reasonable

Bill Holstine urges residents to keep elected leaders accountable.

For opponents of a carbon tax, an initiative threat looms

If legislators don’t act on the governor’s legislation, a plan could land on the November ballot.

Inslee: ‘It’s our state’s destiny … to fight climate change’

In his State-of-the-State address, the governor made the case for an ambitious carbon tax.

Reflecting on the old and ringing in the New Year

What a busy and eventful year this has been. As I write… Continue reading

Disecting the November election results

We just had an election and re-elected two council members, elected a… Continue reading

Taking stock: District charts future learning

Our work in the Tukwila School District is evolving and we are… Continue reading

Thank you, voters

I am writing to say thank you to the voters of Tukwila.… Continue reading