Letter: Thoughts on the Peace Park

Dec 20, 2017

Editor’s note: Based on previous conversations I had with Michelle Meyer, the city’s Finance Director, I was under the impression that the $50,000 mentioned in Vicki Bratvold’s below letter regarding the proposed Peace Park was still in the city’s 2018 budget. I talked to Meyer and that appears to still be the case, but according to Meyer, Patricia Love, the city’s Community Development Director that Love will present an update on the Peace Park. In Bratvold’s letter she says that the council voted to remove the funding for the park. The council wanted to reduce the funding for the project but that never made it into the 2018 amended budget, thus at this time, those funds are still available.

 

Letter:

Last year we experienced a terrible tragedy and lost three amazing young people after the shooting which occurred on July 30.

Families, friends and the community grieved and wondered how to make sense out of such a senseless, horrendous act.

Out of this grieving came the idea for a Peace Park in Mukilteo to honor and remember, not only the victims of the shooting, but also to provide a place of hope, peace, and remembrance for all those who have suffered losses or needed a place to reflect and find peace.

I was invited to be a part of the planning process for this park.

There was a fund of $50,000 set aside by the city to help get the park started. The last few months have been spent with numerous open houses, meetings and thoughtful planning sessions to come up with a design and a location.

A landscape architect donated hours of his time to create a simple, meaningful plan. Byers Park was chosen as the site for the park. The Byers family donated this space years ago, with the intent that the land be used for a public park.

I recently attended the City Council’s budget meeting to create the 2018 budget.

The council spent 20 minutes debating each other’s travel expenses and about two minutes discussing the Peace Park.

Councilmember Christine Cook was the only member to stand for the park as she had also attended the planning meetings.

In the final budget meeting, the council voted to eliminate the fund for the park.

Their reasons for cutting the park out of the budget were lack of planning and that they wanted public donations to pay for the park.

I am extremely disappointed in our City Council.

They had a chance to support and create something lasting and meaningful for generations to come.

This community is like a family with strong connections running all throughout. Out of tragedy we had a chance to create something beautiful, something that could create hope for a better tomorrow.

I am afraid as time goes forward this idea will be forgotten and all the planning that has taken place will have been for nothing.

If you also feel strongly about the Peace Park, please let your Mayor and the City Council know your views.

 

Vicki Bratvold

Mukilteo

Comments (0)
If you wish to comment, please login.