Letters to the Editor

Dec 12, 2018

Thumbs up for Our View column

 

Thank you to Paul Archipley on his opinion piece, "No more parking lots on the waterfront!”

We cannot continue to allow our beautiful waterfront to be comprised of more parking lots when we could readily offer simple solutions.

Steve Schmalz, Mukilteo City Council president, came up with three ideas (I know, he is my husband) that would be beneficial the parking issue without creating yet another parking lot on our waterfront:

1: Lighthouse Park parking during off peak season for commuter parking

2: Work with the Mukilteo School District to use Olympic View Middle School for parking during the summer months

3: Look to revisit the possibility of the park and ride (with overnight commuter parking)

The City Council has not decided on this issue yet, but would gladly accept citizen input regarding adding another parking lot on Mukilteo's waterfront: elected@mukilteowa.gov

 

Christine Awad Schmalz

Mukilteo

 

Waterfront issues and ferry plans

 

For once in a long time I’m in complete agreement with Paul. It’s so ridiculous that the city is sitting by, passively allowing the ferry system to walk all over them. How is it that we have no say in how the waterfront is developed?

I recall speaking with the ferry folks 10-plus years ago when this was a pipe dream, if they even had the money to do this.

“No, we don’t.”

The secretary of transportation filtered that money to build more boats for another terminal.

The tribes using the land “gifted” to them to turn it into a parking lot? We’ve all been saying no to this absurd idea for as long as I can remember.

Enough with trying to further destroy our waterfront. Oh, oops, the multilane highway on the water. I’m so tired of thinking we have some sort of voice.

We’re told, “No you don’t. We’ll give others with the money or gifts to completely destroy the beautiful water views we have left. A 100-foot tall ferry terminal with two levels? The largest one in the state that happens to be the busiest one.

“Oh, once you’re in the terminal holding lanes, we won’t allow anyone access to the businesses they visit every time they wait for the boat.”

Lock you in because it’s for national security? Funny one.

We (Bob Champion) found out this was a complete lie.

I also recall we were to have full access to the water via a promenade walkway.

Not now, you have to walk through the terminal to get to the other side. Why?

Oh, drive all the way through the ferry lanes to drop people off. Huh? Drop off should be right at the toll booth.  We don’t want multiple parking lots on the waterfront.

Zero access from Front Street to Mukilteo Lane. The road cannot handle that much traffic. Not structurally sound or wide enough.

Why are the residents in that area not saying anything? Are they being kept in the dark? We already deal with ferry traffic cutting through Old Town, speeding like crazy in a 25 MPH zone.

Enough. Wake up and fight back. WSF says they want to be good neighbors. Well, let’s make sure of it. No to any plans that don’t include the citizens this directly affects.

I’m all for the tribes using or creating space to share their culture. Not a parking lot.  Create a walking area that focuses on showing your culture through art. I love the sculptures at the beach. Interpretative signage that’s small enough that it’s not an eyesore. No more asphalt.

 

Kris Huxford

Mukilteo

Old Town resident

 

Waterfront blues

 

We are also in agreement with Paul Archipley's Our View “No More Parking Lots on the Waterfront.”

Citizens were excited when we were told the tanks would go away and the waterfront would be open! How disappointing to hear of a plan to make this site a parking lot even after many citizens spoke up.

What a shame is right.

 

Don and Renee Ripley

Mukilteo

 

Honest, open, transparent, ethical, appropriate

 

Washington State Ferries pays sales tax on its new terminal project. At my request, WSF Chief Financial Officer estimated Mukilteo will receive over $900,000 sales tax. Over $500,000 for the contract awarded last week.

This sales tax isn’t in Mukilteo’s 2019 budget.

Ferries’ CFO said they paid more than $110,000 for Mukilteo sales tax in 2018. Mukilteo’s finance director told council she hasn’t seen this 2018 sales tax and didn’t put any revenue from it into the 2019 budget.

Council hasn’t asked how she knows it is not in the lump sum sales tax received monthly or what she’s done to find out why the city has not received it, if true.

No councilmember has brought this up during any budget discussions. It makes no sense the city wouldn’t pursue this. Why is the large sales tax revenue WSF said would be paid not in Mukilteo’s budget?

Last summer at a council worksession, the need for more revenue was discussed. A possible increase in the water/sewer tax, implementing the annual 1 percent property tax that has not been deemed needed by mayor/council for years, and asking voters to approve a $500,000 EMS tax increase were considered.

Council decided to double the water/sewer tax effective Jan. 1, 2019, raising more than $200,000 annually and to raise it the same amount Jan. 1, 2020, at least $400,000 annual increase in utility tax.

Council and mayor decided to ask voters to increase the EMS tax in the August election, which they agreed should be easy because everyone supports EMS. They decided August was preferable to the November election when voters would then know the 12 percent increase in Mukilteo real estate tax was in the 2019 Budget. They felt some would not vote for a large EMS tax increase if they already knew about the 12 percent increase in real estate tax.

The $500,000 EMS Levy increase did not pass. Fire Dept. expenses have increased very little. Council approved the 2019 12 percent real estate tax increase.

Now if residents see the large amount of ferry terminal sales tax, they might ask why utility and property taxes increased so much. Leaving ferry terminal sales tax out of the budget masks the large increased Mukilteo revenue to be received in 2019 and 2020.

Failure to properly budget for all expected revenues and not wanting residents to know the above scheme seems unethical, to me.

 

Charlie Pancerzewski

Twice former Councilmember

Mukilteo

 

Reject I-1000

 

Have you come across some signature ambassadors who were paid to collect signatures for I-1000? Today, I want to bring your attention to this petition.

I-1000 intents to repeal 1998 voter-approved Initiative 200. I-200 prohibited public institutions from discriminating or granting preferential treatment based on race, sex, color, ethnicity or national origin in the areas of public education, public employment, and public contracting.

I-200 only prohibits using race or gender to select a less qualified applicant over a more deserving applicant for public job, contract of admission to a state college or university.

A 2016 Gallup poll showed that “Americans continue to believe colleges should admit applicants based solely on merit (70 percent), rather than taking into account applicants’ race and ethnicity in order to promote diversity (26 percent).”

Sponsors of I-1000 are trying to pass a law to legalize discrimination (it narrowly redefines preferential treatment to allow preferential treatment). It's our duty to prevent our society from returning to the racial profiling era so, let's reject I-1000.

 

Bo Yang

Sammamish

 

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