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The Museum of Flight at Boeing Field has something very special coming April 30 through May 30. The Liberty Foundation’s 2011 Salute to Veterans tour will feature the Boeing B-17 “Liberty Belle” and the rare Curtiss P-40E “Warhawk” fighter aircraft. The B-17 flying fortress is particularly fascinating for a couple of reasons.
Last week, the online version of this newspaper ran an informal survey, asking, “Should the federal government make cuts in the Medicare program to cut the deficit?” The overwhelming response was “no.” Sure, it’s unscientific, but with a 62 percent no vote, that’s a landslide. Don’t cut my bennies, bro. Even if legislators wanted to it’s too hard to make cuts to that program. If any of them say “I want to cut Medicare benefits,” they’ll be on the fast-track to becoming private citizens again.
I listed a car for sale on Craigslist this weekend, which is a website that offers free classified ads, if you aren’t familiar with it. “Why didn’t you list it in your own paper’s classifieds?” you might say. It’s a new world man and I wanted to sell it that afternoon.
I’ve tried not to pick on our state legislators too much, since they have an incredibly difficult job to do right now. Faced with a $5 billion hole in the budget, we’ve declined their offers to help pay for it. We rejected their attempts to tax our Twix bars and Fiji water and even tied their hands by requiring them to get a two-thirds majority to pass any new taxes or fees.
At work, I get a lot of phone calls from sales representatives. They’re always trying to sell stuff of course, but lately they always ask, “So, how’s business?” Fine, I say. Sales are steady, profits are slightly up. What do you hear from your other customers? “Oh, most of them are not doing that great. You know, Macy’s and Amazon are doing all right, but most of the little guys are struggling.”
Some members of Congress complain that American corporations are “shipping jobs overseas.” But an analysis by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce reveals that U.S.regulators are… Continue reading
We’ve got an interesting mix of stories this month in our Tukwila Reporter. From the challenges faced by Tukwila’s refugee populations dealing with budget cuts, to the mounting excitement about whether the Museum of Flight (which technically is in Tukwila) will get a long-sought-after space shuttle, thanks to the retiring of the shuttle program this year by NASA.
The Valley Medical Center Board of Commissioners meeting on Jan. 18 was a momentous occasion. Before the largest-attended board meeting in the hospital’s history, Paul Ramsey, M.D., CEO of UW Medicine and dean of the UW School of Medicine, spoke about how the strategic alliance with Valley Medical Center could strengthen both organizations and add tremendous potential to comprehensive clinical services within our community.
Imagine this: You are wrongfully accused and convicted of rape. Sentenced to 30 years in prison, you serve your sentence, all the while proclaiming your innocence. Appeals come and go. Fifteen years of your life passes behind bars. Finally, someone listens and DNA proves you did not commit the crime. Released from prison after 15 years, it’s time to start your life again. The government responsible for putting you in prison doesn’t even say they are sorry.
State legislators are looking for ways to pare down a budget deficit projected to be $4.6 billion in 2011–13, and ease recessionary burdens on local governments, too. SB5360 and HB1478 would allow cities and counties to place public notices on their Web sites instead of publishing them in their local newspapers. The idea: to save local governments the cost of publishing those notices in print. But those savings would be minimal, particularly compared to the resulting disintegration of the public’s access to information about what their government is doing.
When I walked through the door of the Neighborhood Resource Center Tukwila International Boulevard this month, I was prepared to do a story that was fairly cut-and-dry: The center's upcoming closure, and why it was happening. But when I met Mike Fowler and Rob McKee, the two volunteers behind the counter that day, I realized I had another story on my hands.
As we near the end of 2010, I would like to take this opportunity to recap some of the activity that consumed our time. We knew we continued to be faced with a tremendous economic downturn that had become apparent in Tukwila in the second half of 2008, worsened during the entire year of 2009, and continued to seek its lowest point in 2010.
(These are speaking notes from a press conference that King County Sheriff Sue Rahr delivered Nov. 18, to lay out the budget impacts to her department, and how her office is responding to those cuts.)
I must have a first memory of Tukwila. I just can’t say with certainty what it is. Most of my childhood memories center around growing up on Tukwila Hill, on South 144th Street, around a couple corners from what was City Hall, where the city had its maintenance shop in the back. It was standing in line with all the other kids just a few days before Christmas when I learned that the reality of Santa was somewhat in question. Let’s hope that was at least in the 1950s.
This year the Tukwila Reporter is offering the following suggestions on some of the high-profile state initiatives on the November ballot. The overviews are the consensus of Publisher Polly Shepherd and Editor Laura Pierce.
This election, citizens in Washington will consider Referendum 52, a $500 million bond measure to fund energy retrofits on public buildings. Voters should consider several key questions as they cast their ballots: ● Will the measure create or kill jobs? ● Will savings be greater than costs? ● Will we improve the learning environment of our schools? ● Should we ignore other education needs to fund this project? R-52’s sponsors promise the measure will create new jobs and improve the health of schools by providing grants aimed at reducing energy costs. A closer review, however, shows R-52 is unlikely to live up to these promises, and will cost taxpayers a total of $937 million over the life of the bonds.
The City of Tukwila is embaring on a process to improve our financial stability. Over the next few months we will explore a variety of actions to better balance our budget for the long term. Because these actions could involve significant changes to the services we provide, I would like to briefly give you some background information and explain how you can stay informed as we work through the process.
Back in September, I made arrangements to meet with Audrey Davis. She’s a member of the Southgate Garden Club, and a proud supporter of the club’s “Blue Star Memorial Marker,” which they had installed at Cascade View Park in Tukwila. With Veterans Day coming up Nov. 11, Davis wanted to acquaint me with this marker. It is a nationally recognized way for local groups to acknowledge U.S. veterans, and she thought this would be a great local angle. Well, when I got to that park Sept. 23, I was treated to something else: Davis looking dejectedly at a plaque that had been defaced with spray paint.
Have we learned anything from British Petroleum’s debacle in the Gulf? Frankly, I think we’ve learned just how much we don’t know. And because of that, we should cease drilling in U.S. waters until there’s better science to be had.
Faced with yawning budget deficits, state legislators are looking for new revenue sources. Many think hiking cigarette excise taxes is the pain-free answer, but they're wrong.