Letters: Response, Lighthouse Festival, and more

Sep 26, 2018

Response to Stoltz’s Guest View


Interesting thing about “opinion” pieces, a writer can paint a particular version of a situation. Readers take it in, and unfortunately, many comprehend the words as pure fact. I’m specifically referring to Kevin Stoltz’s Guest View piece in the Sept. 19 issue of the Mukilteo Beacon.

There are many points of to consider in Mr. Stoltz’s long piece. It seems he was awarded much more than the typical 400 words to detail his continued dissatisfaction with the planning, design, and permitting of the new ferry terminal and corresponding pedestrian and traffic changes.

As fellow citizens, many of us have also followed the process, which has been considered in great detail by members of our community, Mukilteo FAC (on which he serves), Mukilteo city leadership, WSDOT, and WSF. We too have attended or followed the conversations stemming from council meetings, community meetings and comment opportunities, and what I’m sure have been hours and hours of conversations and meetings between city leaders and agency leads.

After reading Mr. Stoltz’s piece, I’m left with the following questions: What evidence would he provide to support that “the council was previously pressured to make some decisions without adequate consideration and input from the community...?”

As I understand, there are very specific and adhered-to processes and timelines for collecting public input. Our community leaders have followed those meticulously. Our council members have been provided with volumes of information.

Citing that the council didn’t “adequately address” traffic mitigation concerns at the end of 2017 regarding “Condition 56” of the hearing examiners decision is another opinion. What points and data would Mr. Stoltz have included in the laborious conversations about how to mitigate the traffic flow in a tight area with few alternatives?

The city has been informed that the project will be re-bid. Prior to the revised call for bids projected for November 2018, there will be some “slight” modifications to the scope. As I understand, there will not be major changes.

Mr. Stoltz seems to infer there is an opportunity for influence over the coming weeks to the items which aren’t planned the way he feels are appropriate – given that our council was “pressured” and didn’t “adequately address” them the first time.

It seems that Kevin is fanning the flames on a fire that has been banked.


Casey Bowers




Lighthouse Festival Takes a Village


The news that the Mukilteo Lighthouse Festival may be ending has brought some positive reaction regarding the importance of the festival to our community. As logistic chair for the festival the past three years, I challenge those who value bringing our community together with the festival to step up to make it happen.

Although the city is a partner in making the festival happen, lodging tax grants don’t provide a majority of funding for the festival. Community volunteers, sponsors, businesses that participate with “in kind” donations, fees for booth participation, and individual citizen donations make up a majority of funding. The Letter to the Editor calling for city staff to give up their paychecks to help with festival funding is misguided.

Our city staff gives 150 percent throughout the year to do everything possible to support the Lighthouse Festival Committee in the making of the festival. Together we focus on safety, practicality and staying within the requirements of our laws, which are key to a successful festival. City staff has gone the extra mile to help with every aspect of our festival.

Thank you to city employees. You’re professional, hard-working, problem solvers that anticipate how to support our festival and are right there making things happen when your expertise is needed. The festival committee, especially the logistics volunteers, appreciates and thanks you!

Thank you to businesses in our community that consistently help out. We know there are many requests for businesses to help throughout our community and we appreciate that you choose the festival. For those that haven’t supported the festival, perhaps next year your business considers helping. Check the website for sponsorship opportunities. https://mukfest.com/sponsorship/

Thank you to community members that take time to volunteer whether it’s for festival weekend, as a committee chair, or MLFA board member planning for the year. Your time, energy, and constructive ideas are appreciated and welcome. Thanks for choosing to volunteer.

How can community members help? Become a “Friend of the Festival” (https://mukfest.com/become-a-mukfest-friend/).

A $35 individual membership/$50 family membership adds up when many participate. Or you can help with a donation at https://mukfest.com/make-a-donation/.

Making the festival happen takes many volunteers. You can help by volunteering to do a small or big job.

The next Mukilteo Lighthouse Festival Association meeting is tomorrow at 7 p.m. at the Chamber of Commerce.

It does take a village; I hope you choose to make the Mukilteo Lighthouse Festival happen.



Lani O’Connor

MLFA Logistics Chair

MLFA Board Member



Thumbs up for ‘Cool Girls’


Encouraging girls to learn about and consider careers that have often been dominated by males helps to close the pay gap in the future (“Cool learning for ‘Cool Girls’” by Mukilteo Mayor Jennifer Gregerson, Mukilteo Beacon, Sept. 19, 2018).

For the City Council to encourage and celebrate this initiative makes a difference.  Around the globe, this effort begins with education for all, and is being moved forward by the Global Partnership for Education. These efforts will definitely improve our world from Mukilteo to Madagascar. Let’s encourage our representatives at all levels to support these educational initiatives.


Willie Dickerson



Ortiz-Self wastes time on rhetorical international issues


Rep. Lillian Ortiz-Self is making more work of the political spectrum, already rescinded by the voters.

Like the debate on James Comey, the Clintons dabbling behind closed Russian doors, before Trump came along, this truth was earmarked for the Democrats.

While today’s debate on Puerto Rico is still pursued because of Obama's inept action to allow the Jones Act to fulfill it's obligation to U.S. ports, a security for ports and harbors and American jobs, Puerto Rico has been in economic collapse for a decade already.

Ortiz-Self should know the Democrats had eight years for imports and exports to allow for trade development to occur. The first place are commodities, like agriculture, where in Cuba economic development was led by oxen and plough, leaving Russian-fueled ships stranded with no delivery mechanism for Cuba.

Puerto Rico’s leaders and Ortiz-Self, continue to use “race cards” to blame the present administration. If Puerto Rico had initiated a similar plan as Cuba, they could be better prepared for disasters their leaders know are imminent threats in this day of global warming.

Any island recovers in it's own process with man assisting mother nature in her recovery. Puerto Rico waited too long; so did the Democrats. Ortiz-Self should focus on real economic development for Puerto Rico, if that's her fight.


Stirling T. Hebenstreit



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