Letters for the week of Oct. 10
Residents should park for free
Editor, The Beacon:
At last week’s Mukilteo City Council meeting, I made a motion that Mukilteo residents should not be required to pay for parking at Lighthouse Park and/or on certain streets on the waterfront.
When City Administrator Joe Hannan confirmed that the paid parking model that the city presented would still work without residents having to pay for parking, I made the motion thinking that the council would be in full support of our residents.
Instead of a simple up or down vote, five councilmembers (not myself nor Kevin Stoltz) voted to table the motion, opting to bring it back at a later date.
Some councilmembers seemed offended by the motion, complaining that this topic wasn’t discussed in the past or there hasn’t been enough public input. This is not true.
The council has had numerous discussions on paid parking, including an agenda item with public input at the City Council meeting on Sept.17 [“City to charge for parking on waterfront,” front page, Sept. 19].
At that meeting, the council voted to request bids from parking companies to implement paid parking at Lighthouse Park and on certain streets on the waterfront.
This proposal includes residents having to pay $1.50 per hour or purchase a $35 annual pass to park in these areas of the city. I voted against this, along with Stoltz.
Mukilteo residents should not have to pay for parking at a park in which they already pay for the maintenance ($175,000) and the maintenance of city streets.
As a resident said to me, “So we are going to be double taxed if we want to go to the park?” Yes, we will.
A simple solution would be to issue Mukilteo residents a car sticker (at no charge), which would allow residents to park for free anywhere in the city.
If you have an opinion on paid parking at Lighthouse Park or on the waterfront, please email email@example.com.
Mukilteo City Council,
Boeing would be OK
Does the writer of a letter to the editor last week even believe the list of perils they allege would result from instituting commercial air traffic at Paine Field [“The FAA doesn’t know what’s best,” page 4, Oct. 3]? Here are the writer’s stated concerns:
“Property values; hours of operation; overflight and flight paths; safety record and accidents; emissions, air quality and VOC’s; chemical runoff; health effects; water quality; natural resource protections; bird kill, fuel dumping; short- and long-term parking; traffic and access; school safety; decibel levels and noise abatement; vibration and slope stability; existing land uses; future plans; operations oversight.”
Apparently, the only thing we don’t need to worry about (or is it just an oversight?) is whether the sky will fall!
Oh, but, what if a plane crashes into the two large water tanks at the northwest corner of 44th Avenue W. and 84th Street W.? That would send a torrent of water downhill and wipe out half of Mukilteo! Run, people, run! I’m building an ark!
The cult hysteria surrounding this project is phenomenal.
The biggest phony issue of all is the “concern” that the project may crowd Boeing out of using Paine Field to test aircraft. Even the Chamber of Commerce is now espousing this fabricated concern.
Boeing stated (and it’s documented in the EA): “Boeing would not be negatively impacted by the addition of commercial air service to Paine Field.”
Furthermore, Boeing is concerned that, if Snohomish County were to refuse commercial service at Paine Field, the FAA could withhold future airport improvement funding.
Dead issue, Chamber. Or do you big-time Mukilteo business types know what is good for Boeing even better than Boeing? As is usually the case, just mouthing the Mukilteo city government’s views seldom gains you credibility.
Finally, bravo to the FAA for a job well done. Just methodically going through hundreds of crackpot letters (yes, you should read some of them) must have been a real challenge.
Let’s get on with this project and let the city spend its legal fund reserve buying more (I kid you not) driftwood! Perhaps they can even purchase a mechanical orca next!!
Schools need newer buses
As a Mukilteo school bus driver, I am writing to encourage you to vote ‘Yes’ on the upcoming transportation levy in November. There are many reasons to vote for the school levy, but the most important one, in my opinion, is our children’s safety.
Fourteen buses in the fleet are more than 20 years old, meaning they are less safe, less efficient, and have a greater risk of braking down while on the road with students. What is paramount is how the level of safety would be increased.
Some of the safety improvements with new buses are:
• 33 percent larger windshield improving the driver’s sight line.
• Mirror systems have been improved inside and outside to improve visibility in the front and alongside. This also increases our visibility while loading and unloading, when most injuries or fatalities occur.
• The passenger seats have higher backs, increased padding and stronger constructed seating to improve compartmentalization and protect students. Seats will be required to have fire-block material.
• Electronic stability controls have been improved to assist the driver in maintaining control in critical driving situations in which the bus is beginning to lose directional stability.
• Emergency egress is held to a higher standard to provide improved readily accessible emergency exit for passengers.
• School bus construction of panels and joints has been improved to minimize the potential for structural collapse during impact.
Earlier this year I was involved in a head on collision where I was stopped at a stop sign and a vehicle came around the corner at a high rate of speed and slammed into the front of my bus.
I was driving one of the newer buses with the compartmentalized seating and none of the 32 children on the bus was injured.
This is a testament that shows how the safety requirements on the newer buses helped prevent any injuries to the children.
The levy is only for one year and your taxes actually go down due to a large drop in the school district bond obligation. What else is there to consider. Vote ‘Yes’ for our children!
For more information, go to the school district’s website at: HYPERLINK "http://www.mukilteo.wednet.edu" www.mukilteo.wednet.edu.
aka Mike Rizzotti,
I don’t want what you’re selling
I am a Mukilteo senior. I vote in favor of every school referendum. I try to support school sports teams and extracurricular activities, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, etc.
I don't want entertainment cards, popcorn, cookies, candy, gift wrap or magazines. When the neighborhood children come to the door fundraising or in front of the grocery store, I wonder why there isn't an option to simply make a cash donation.
In fact, I do give a cash donation.
Whether it makes it to the Kamiak football team, OV band or scouts I haven't a clue. There must be plenty of people who feel as I do.
A park-and-ride may be in our future
More than a year ago, Tim Taylor and I submitted a letter to The Beacon expressing our opposition for turning the 20 acres of Mukilteo waterfront into a transportation facility that has little benefit for the residents of Mukilteo.
We identified in that letter the possibility of developing a combination park-and-ride and commuter parking lot on the west side of Paine Field along the Mukilteo Speedway.
We reasoned if a facility could be developed, with a shuttle bus that could move people between the ferry dock and a Paine Field parking facility (5-10 minute commute), it could reduce traffic congestion on the Mukilteo Speedway and in the vicinity of the existing ferry dock.
We hoped our suggestions might encourage the city to re-think the proposed transportation facilities for the benefit of Mukilteo.
Unfortunately, the Mukilteo city administration and a majority of the City Council took no action and pursued sacrificing most of our valuable waterfront for the benefit of Whidbey Island commuters and state transportation desires.
As a result, myself and some others asked Snohomish County Councilman Brian Sullivan and Mukilteo City Councilmembers Kevin Stoltz and Steve Schmalz, who also expressed a desire to preserve the waterfront, to approach Paine Field management and explore the possibility of developing a park-and-ride/commuter parking facility.
Thanks to the efforts of these councilmen, it has now come to light that there is indeed a possibility of obtaining a state grant to fund a transportation facility at Paine Field that could accommodate 400-700 vehicles.
As a result, I hope the Mukilteo City Council and mayor can begin to understand the positive implications this facility could provide for Mukilteo; (1) it could reduce traffic congestion around the current ferry dock and Lighthouse Park (aka Old Town), and (2) it may serve as a way to preserve a majority of the waterfront for development that would benefit our city.
The “No Build” option is still a way to accomplish the best result for Mukilteo, but it will take both vision and leadership by our elected representatives.
Congratulations to Beacon
for newspaper award wins
I congratulate Pat Ratliff, Doug Warren and Sara Bruestle on your impressive awards [Beacon wins 3 awards at WNPA convention,” The Beacon, page 3, Oct. 3].
I'm proud to be associated with such as the three of you and The Beacon.
The Constant Curmudgeon,
Meeting room is well used
I wanted to take an opportunity to follow up with Mukilteo City Council and city officials regarding room use at the city property 4902 76th St. S.W., managed by the Mukilteo Chamber of Commerce.
The meeting room and storage space is well used by many community members and local non-profit organizations. Those who use the meeting room always express appreciation for the availability to them.
The meeting room is used on a bi-weekly basis by the Mukilteo Lions Club, monthly by the Everett Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Lighthouse Festival board and committees.
The Mukilteo Community Garden used the room every Saturday throughout the spring for garden bed sign-ups.
The following is a complete list of other Mukilteo organizations and businesses that have used the meeting room this year:
Windermere/Mukilteo, Starbucks, Water Wellness, Compass, Tutti a Tavoli, Pi Plus Tutors, Island View HOA, The Villas Condo Association, Girl Scouts, Lighthouse First Aid, 71st Street Block Watch Group, Backyard Wildlife Habitat, Mukilteo Community Orchestra, Mukilteo Arts Guild, Waterfront Wednesdays and Kamiak Color Guard.
Many of the local non-profits rely on the basement of the building for storage including the Mukilteo Arts Guild, Japanese Gulch Group, Lighthouse Festival, Waterfront Wednesday Group, Rosehill Players, Save Our Community, Mukilteo Kiwanis, the Mukilteo Garden and Quilt Tour and Mukilteo Dog Park.
It has been a busy year for Mukilteo and for all of the organizations planning activities and programs.
Thank you for the opportunity to make it easy for these organizations to meet and make these events happen.
Mukilteo Chamber of Commerce