West Seattle Blog... » West Seattle politics http://westseattleblog.com West Seattle news, 24/7 Sun, 25 Jan 2015 19:27:51 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.4.2 West Seattle politics: Councilmember Tom Rasmussen not running, elaborates on ‘very difficult’ decision http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/west-seattle-politics-councilmember-tom-rasmussen-wont-run-again/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/west-seattle-politics-councilmember-tom-rasmussen-wont-run-again/#comments Fri, 23 Jan 2015 18:18:44 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=299016 10:18 AM: West Seattle-residing City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen has just announced he’s changed his mind about running to stay on the council. Here’s his statement. The field of candidates for West Seattle’s City Council District 1 seat is now down to three, with the first forum less than 2 weeks away. More to come.

10:29 AM: Rasmussen has been on the council since 2004 (here’s his bio), and currently chairs the Transportation Committee. His statement (linked above) says in part, “This wasn’t an easy decision but, it is the right one. It is now time to direct my efforts toward the same causes I have always been most passionate about — in exciting new ways.” He is the second councilmember to announce this week that he’s not running to stay on the council, which has all nine seats going to voters this fall, seven for the new districts, two at large. Nick Licata made his not-running announcement on Wednesday.

11:04 AM: Mayor Murray‘s statement:

Councilmember Rasmussen has been deeply engaged in public life as long as I can remember. As an advocate for seniors, human services, parks and innovative transportation solutions, Tom demonstrates active and effective leadership for our City. He was instrumental in our successful campaign last year to expand bus transit – for which I’m very grateful. I am especially thankful for his partnership in our effort to secure civil rights and marriage equality for the LGBT community. Seattle is losing a major champion on the council, but we know his community activism will find new outlets as he writes his next chapter.

11:14 AM: We contacted Councilmember Rasmussen to ask about his decision. In a phone interview a short time ago, he told us it was “very difficult – I love my job, I love working with the community and in the community, but I was torn” between spending the next year doing that job AND campaigning, or focusing on the work. He points out he still has almost a full year left in office, and he vows that he won’t be “slacking off” – most days, he says, he’s “out of the house by 5, back after 6″ (back on Wednesday night, he was at the Delridge District Council meeting, which ran until 9) and after his final year, he looks forward to a “more balanced” life.

He says he felt the need to announce this early because he was receiving donations and offers of volunteering, endorsements, and other campaign help already, and because “other folks who might be interested can step up.” No, he’s not endorsing a candidate yet, but says he’ll be looking for one who also will be out in the community – “you can’t just sit in your office, you have to be a problem-solver.” As quoted above, he said he hopes to focus more on the causes for which he has long worked; we asked which might be his major focus in post-council life, and he said that “working on issues relating to seniors and people with disabilities is really fundamental.”

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Countdown: 2 weeks away from ‘District 1: First Look’ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/countdown-2-weeks-away-from-district-1-first-look/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/countdown-2-weeks-away-from-district-1-first-look/#comments Fri, 23 Jan 2015 06:03:20 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=298966 Four people want your vote in their quest to become the first City Councilmember for District 1, representing West Seattle and South Park (listed this time in first-name reverse-alphabetical order):

*Tom Rasmussen
*George Capestany
*Chas Redmond
*Amanda Kay Helmick

Though voting in the first-ever district elections (explained here) is six months away (August 4th primary), now’s the time to start finding out what the contenders are all about. And so, two weeks from tonight, WSB invites you to get your first look at them side by side as we present “District 1: First Look,” the first candidates’ forum in the race. Hope to see you at Highland Park Improvement Club on Thursday night, February 5th – doors open 6:30, forum at 7, admission and refreshments free, bring the question(s) you want to be sure get answered!

ADDED 10:35 AM FRIDAY: As noted in comments, Rasmussen has just left the race, leaving Redmond, Helmick, and Capestany. If anyone else files before the forum, they’ll be invited to participate.

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11 West Seattle areas proposed for ‘Pedestrian Zone’ tweaks http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/11-west-seattle-areas-proposed-for-pedestrian-zone-tweaks/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/11-west-seattle-areas-proposed-for-pedestrian-zone-tweaks/#comments Sat, 17 Jan 2015 01:24:00 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=298339 Last year, the city’s draft proposal for Pedestrian Zones was circulated to neighborhood and district councils around West Seattle and the rest of the city via a series of briefings, several of which were covered here, starting with one almost a full year ago in Morgan Junction.

It’s meant to tweak zoning in some business districts to ensure that future development is more pedestrian-friendly. And tonight, the mayor’s office has announced the final proposal is ready for review. The announcement came via a news release you can read here, and a sheaf of documents linked here. Maps show the 11 sections of West Seattle where changes are proposed; you can see the maps here. There are five maps – scroll through the first 25 until you get to:

*Exhibit Z, showing a stretch of Delridge Way from north of Juneau to just north of Brandon
*Exhibit AA, showing stretches of 35th SW in Morgan, Gatewood, Westwood
*Exhibit BB, showing a section of South Delridge
*Exhibit FF, showing a section of Admiral
*Exhibit GG, showing part of The Junction

(Specific information about each area proposed for tweaks can be found in this report.) None of the proposed rezoning shown would change maximum allowable height for development in the affected areas. This all goes now to the City Council, which will set dates for hearings and votes.

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Your first all-in-one-place look at West Seattle’s would-be District 1 City Councilmembers: 20 days away http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/your-first-all-in-one-place-look-at-west-seattles-would-be-district-1-city-councilmembers-20-days-away/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/your-first-all-in-one-place-look-at-west-seattles-would-be-district-1-city-councilmembers-20-days-away/#comments Fri, 16 Jan 2015 21:34:53 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=298317

Sounds like a long time, but it’s not: We are now less than 3 weeks away from your first side-by-side look at the four (so far) people who want to be the first-ever Seattle District 1 City Councilmember, representing West Seattle and South Park. WSB is presenting the first announced candidates’ forum in this race:

Thursday, February 5, at Highland Park Improvement Club (1116 SW Holden)
Doors open 6:30 pm
Forum 7-8:30 pm

The candidates are (in first-name alphabetical order this time):

*Amanda Kay Helmick
*Chas Redmond
*George Capestany
*Tom Rasmussen

If you need to bookmark a reminder, here’s the official listing on the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar (Facebook event page coming up soon too). HPIC has lots of room, and we’ll have refreshments, so have dinner and then come see and hear (and bring a question for!) the contenders for this area’s new seat on the City Council, which starting this year will be made up of seven people elected by district, two at large.

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Election 2015: One month until City Council District 1 forum http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/election-2015-one-month-until-city-council-district-1-forum/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/election-2015-one-month-until-city-council-district-1-forum/#comments Mon, 05 Jan 2015 21:08:20 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=297157

2015 is here, and its elections (August 4th primary/November 3rd general) will bring Seattle voters’ first chance to choose 7 of 9 City Councilmembers by district. The field of candidates for District 1 (West Seattle/South Park) has remained at four for some weeks now – in reverse-alphabetical order this time, they are:

*Chas Redmond
*Tom Rasmussen
*Amanda Kay Helmick
*George Capestany

Today, we’re exactly one month away from what will likely be your first chance to see and hear from all four in one place. As announced last month, WSB is presenting the campaign season’s first announced District 1 Candidates Forum, on Thursday, February 5th (6:30 pm mingle/7 pm forum), at Highland Park Improvement Club. We hope you’ll be there, and we’re hoping you’ll participate in the preparation too. For starters: Which issue(s) do you think matter most in this race? Comment here when you have a moment, or e-mail editor@westseattleblog.com – thanks!

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Followup: Trinity West Seattle launches tomorrow at ex-Mars Hill http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/followup-trinity-west-seattle-launches-tomorrow-at-ex-mars-hill/ http://westseattleblog.com/2015/01/followup-trinity-west-seattle-launches-tomorrow-at-ex-mars-hill/#comments Sat, 03 Jan 2015 22:46:44 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=297048

The banner at 7551 35th SW announces the new name of what had been Mars Hill Church-West Seattle since fall 2006Trinity West Seattle, officially launching with services tomorrow morning. It’s been just two months since Mars Hill announced it would disband, leaving its churches to close or go independent. It appears they’re making the transition with familiar faces/voices, including Pastors David Fairchild and Cliff Ellis, who are on the new website’s list of “elders and staff” (the former preached last Sunday, the church’s last as MH-WS). Pastor Ellis was among the signatories on this August letter calling for MH’s controversial founder Pastor Mark Driscoll to permanently step down, which he did in October, not long before the entire church announced it would disband. The new Trinity West Seattle website says the church will launch with a seven-week series of sermons under the title, “Long Story Short: Finding Ourselves in the Biblical Drama,” described in part as “a particularly good series for both seekers and skeptics while shaping and forming our church to embody the biblical story.”

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Election 2015: Now 4 in the running for West Seattle/South Park’s City Council District 1; announcing our February forum http://westseattleblog.com/2014/12/election-2015-now-4-in-the-running-for-west-seattlesouth-parks-city-council-district-1-announcing-our-february-forum/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/12/election-2015-now-4-in-the-running-for-west-seattlesouth-parks-city-council-district-1-announcing-our-february-forum/#comments Tue, 16 Dec 2014 20:10:44 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=295562

2015 will make history in West Seattle for at least one reason: Our area’s first-ever District 1 City Councilmember will be elected. Today, there’s a change in the list of who’s in the running: According to the city’s election-information website, one of the five declared candidates, David Ishii, has moved his candidacy to one of the city’s two at-large seats, so that leaves four District 1 candidates so far (with other changes likely of course since the deadline for declaring is months away) – in alphabetical order:

*George Capestany
*Amanda Kay Helmick
*Tom Rasmussen
*Chas Redmond

checkbox.jpgAnd this gives us the chance to mention that all four candidates are confirmed for an early City Council District 1 Candidates’ Forum that we at WSB are presenting on February 5th – get it on your calendar now! It will start with mingling and refreshments at 6:30 pm, forum 7-8:30 pm, at Highland Park Improvement Club – we thank HPIC, one of West Seattle’s great historic community venues, for agreeing to provide the space for the forum!

Though West Seattleites will vote on three City Council seats in August and September 2015 – District 1 plus two at-large – we are focusing this forum ONLY on D-1, the one seat that will be accountable directly to this area. Stay tuned to WSB for more details as it gets closer. (P.S. If anyone else files to run in District 1 before then, s/he will of course be invited to participate too – contact us at editor@westseattleblog.com if we don’t contact you first!)

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How to pay for education? What your legislators said tonight @ 34th District Democrats http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/how-to-pay-for-education-what-your-legislators-said-tonight-34th-district-democrats/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/how-to-pay-for-education-what-your-legislators-said-tonight-34th-district-democrats/#comments Thu, 13 Nov 2014 05:05:55 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=291952

From tonight’s meeting of the 34th District Democrats, a look back at the November election, a look ahead to the Legislature in January, and more, ahead:

ELECTION POSTMORTEM: Chair Marcee Stone-Vekich lamented the “slightly depressing” election results and especially the fact that our state had its lowest voter turnout since 1978. She said the 34th Dems had done their part with get-out-the-vote, but while it didn’t pay off this time around, she expressed optimism for 2016. In the 34th, though, she said almost everything and everyone the group endorsed had won election/passed, except for the Highline Public Schools bond measure, which needed 60 percent approval to pass, and is falling short at 59.1%. (Speaking about that later, a supporter said that it’s not expected to gain much more ground, and that next spring, Highline has to take a maintenance/operations levy to the ballot, but a bond measure “will be back.”

LEGISLATORS’ UPDATE: Sen. Sharon Nelson said she doesn’t think the education goals can be done “without new revenue … so it’s a question of, what revenue. I’m asking my caucus not to take any option off the table. … We have a Republican majority again in the Senate. They need to govern.” Their “no new taxes” mantra, she said, “is something they’re going to have to face. … We won’t go to cutting the social safety net.” The educational needs are going to have to be met: “We’re not getting out of town without taking care of our kids.” She spoke personally of a grandchild, now 18 months, leading to “a whole new look that I’ve been giving education these past 18 months … and it’s refreshing.”

Speaking next, longtime Rep. Eileen Cody, first calling for applause for Sen. Nelson, saying the Senate Democrats did better in the election than the House Democrats, who “had a few losses we didn’t expect.” In particular, she says, her Health Care Committee “has been decimated” by losses among fellow health-care professionals who had been House members. She says they’ll get through it, but it means mutual support – “that’s the message we’re giving each other, we all have to stick together … you may have to vote for some things you don’t like” if any of their initiatives are to succeed.

And then Rep. Joe Fitzgibbon, just re-elected, called it “a terrible year for Democrats,” who he said “just stayed home” rather than “suddenly changing their mind and voting for Republicans.” The districts that saw Democratic losses tended to have a “terrible turnout,” he said. Switching gears, he said, “We’re all tired of coming up here and telling you how bad the budget is, but this year it’s really bad, worse than before.” He also expressed optimism for 2016, saying the Democrats don’t want to stay in the Senate minority, at a 51-vote bare House majority, etc.

Asked how the funding for McCleary (the mandated education spending) might look, Nelson said more than $3 billion would be needed, and that again is why she wants everything on the table – “until we know how we’re going to fund this.” Property tax? Sales tax? Closing loopholes? Lists are being made she said, and “there are options out there … we’re going to have to look at every possible revenue source.”

“Is there any chance we’re going to pass a transportation package?” is the next question.

Fitzgibbon said flatly, “No.”

Cody then said, “It’s not totally off the table.”

“I agree, I was being a little flip,” Fitzgibbon then said.

Nelson pointed out that there’s water trouble in Eastern Washington – possibly a $4 billion bond issue needed – and that might be leverage for getting Republicans to agree on education funding, maybe even transportation.

Reacting to a suggestion of sin/sugar taxes, Cody said that’s not so easy, recalling the passed-then-repealed pop tax, and also pointing out that tobacco use is migrating to “vaping,” which has many ramifications.

Next question: Dollar value for I-1351, the class-size-reduction measure now passing? “It adds potentially another $3 to $4 billion dollars,” Sen. Nelson replied, adding that part of it is covered in McCleary. “I’m expecting that the Republicans will ask us to suspend it.” (That could be done with a two-thirds majority immediately, it was clarified shortly thereafter.) It’s “going to be a heavy lift,” Nelson says. “I want to see (the Republicans’) answer to 1351, I really do.”

What about marijuana tax revenue? Fitzgibbon says, “We’re kind of hesitant to book a bunch of revenue when we’re not sure how much … we know it’s not going to be enough for McCleary.” As for 1351, he mentioned an initiative that was funded for a few years – I-728 – which was suspended after two years, when that could be done with a simple majority, and then was eventually repealed.

Discussion about loopholes ensued. Addressing the Boeing loophole, for example, Nelson said they have a “sledgehammer” because of the jobs they could pull, although she then said she is “tired of being held hostage.”

Bill Schrier brings up the issue of body-worn video for law enforcement now facing “massive requests” (public disclosure) that could render it a burden on some local governments, and might they consider an exception.

“Public disclosure, whenever it comes up on refining that law and scaling it back, becomes incredibly difficult,” responds Nelson.

TRANSIT-FUNDING PROP 1: City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen spoke for a few minutes about its passage, calling the 62 percent approval “powerful.” He also reminded, “Keep in mind, this is only a temporary tax … that’s why it’s important we elect Democrats to the Senate and House because we need a transportation package (with) a more equitable way of (funding) transit.” He mentioned the citizens’ oversight committee that will be created, and promised to let the group what the process to get onto that committee will be. He said an oversight committee will “make sure promises are kept.” Once the money flows into the bus service, “you’ll see the best bus service Seattle has ever had.”

COUNTY COUNCILMEMBER JOE McDERMOTT: Speaking next, Councilmember McDermott sounded an optimistic note post-election, regarding local successes such as Prop 1 and preschool passage, and declared, “Our district is strong – we have a fantastic legislative delegation … we want to support them by assisting districts around us.” He also mentioned that he’s been focused on the County Council’s budget work over the past two months or so, with a final vote due next Monday, and highlights including a plan to keep all 10 county health clinics open – for now – and “re-funding the Sheriff’s unit for domestic violence.”

OPEN MICROPHONE: Topics brought up included Ivan Weiss mentioning a report that that city Families and Education Levy money has been found to be usable for charter schools, and urged everyone to keep watch for that happening, and “raise a stink” if it does. … Max Vekich spoke about longshore workers working without a contract for more than four months, and decried the terminal operators’ claim of a work slowdown, ignoring factors such as reduced terminal space (he mentioned the T-5 closure) and larger ships. What about the higher number than usual of anchored freighters in the area? For one, he mentioned grain ships that are still catching up from a lockout; and he added that a lot of current challenges that are leading to less productivity than usual. The presidential election also came up, with one member declaring she’s hoping for more options than Hillary Rodham Clinton.

PARK DISTRICT BOARD: Ted Barker pointed out that the City Council will meet as the Park District Board on November 24th, so anyone interested in how that’s going to work should be there.

VETERANS’ DAY REMEMBRANCE .. was offered by former State Rep. Max Vekich, looking back to its origins, followed by a moment of silence.

The 34th District Democrats usually meet on second Wednesdays, 7 pm, The Hall at Fauntleroy, and are online at 34dems.org.

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And now there are five: George Capestany running for West Seattle’s City Council District 1 position http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/and-now-there-are-five-george-capestany-running-for-west-seattles-city-council-district-1-position/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/and-now-there-are-five-george-capestany-running-for-west-seattles-city-council-district-1-position/#comments Tue, 11 Nov 2014 20:21:31 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=291759 A fifth candidate just announced he’s in the running for West Seattle’s new City Council District 1 seat next year: George Capestany. He’s made news here as owner of the well-known Jacobsen Road goats, and now he’s jumping into politics. As described in his official announcement, Capestany is also “a longtime West Seattle resident, active community volunteer, and US Navy Veteran” and “professional artist, teacher, a small business owner, … coach for Pony & Little League Baseball, West Seattle Soccer, and West Seattle Football.” The announcement notes that Capestany would be the first councilmember of Hispanic descent, as the “son of Hispanic immigrants forced to leave (Cuba) due to communist rule.” He says, “For a long time, West Seattle residents have been left out of virtually everything that goes on at City Hall. … I will work to ensure the unique needs of West Seattle are heard and addressed.” (Photo courtesy Capestany campaign)

Also in the running so far for District 1, which includes South Park as well as West Seattle, in order of their announcements/filings: Chas Redmond, David Ishii, Tom Rasmussen, and Amanda Kay Helmick. The filing deadline is May 1st of next year.

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Election 2014: After five days of ballot-counting, a look ahead for transit, preschool, class-size measures http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/election-2014-after-five-days-of-ballot-counting-a-look-ahead-for-transit-preschool-class-size-measures/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/election-2014-after-five-days-of-ballot-counting-a-look-ahead-for-transit-preschool-class-size-measures/#comments Sun, 09 Nov 2014 08:04:36 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=291533 Today (Sunday) will be the first day King County Elections has *not* released updated results since Tuesday night. That night’s ballot count was followed by two daily Wednesday-Friday and one more Saturday evening. Here are three notes following the latter:

TRANSIT FUNDING (Transportation Benefit District Prop 1):
Yes 61.14% – 109,139 votes
No 38.86% – 69,380 votes

What’s next? Since Wednesday’s media briefing (WSB coverage here) with the mayor and county executive, Metro general manager Kevin Desmond has sent an e-mail message to bus-alert subscriber lists, including this:

… We’re working with the city now to flesh out the agreement, including the exact route improvements. It will be submitted to the city and county councils in December for adoption early next year.

The need is clear. Seattle voters, like transit riders across the county, undoubtedly have experienced the packed buses that have come with growing ridership. Metro is on track to deliver 120 million rides countywide this year—a record high—and our financial situation has not allowed us to expand to meet the demand.

Our just-released 2014 Service Guidelines Report, which analyzes the performance of our transit system and identifies investment needs, found that Metro should be providing 15 percent more service to meet current demand countywide. …

(That report does not appear to be online yet; it wasn’t linked, and we could only find the 2013 version. We’ll check on Monday.)

PRESCHOOL (Seattle Propositions 1A/1B):
Prop 1A – 31.29% – 49,393 votes
Prop 1B – 68.71% – 108,477 votes

What’s next? Thanks to Diane for forwarding e-mail about meetings to discuss how the resulting Seattle Preschool Program will be planned and implemented. Two meetings, both on December 6th, are in West Seattle, at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, the first focused on curriculum, the second on teacher training/coaching. They and others around the city, starting later this month, are listed on this flyer.

SMALLER CLASS SIZE (Statewide Initiative 1351):
Yes 50.49% 945,851 votes
No 49.51% 927,356 votes

What’s next? This trailed on election night, but now supporters have declared victory. How this will be made to happen, the Legislature has to work out, as the text says.

SEE FULL, UPDATED LOCAL AND STATE RESULTS: If there’s something else you want to check on, King County’s results are all linked here; statewide races and measures are all linked here.

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Election 2014: Transit taxes passing – what will your money buy? http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/election-2014-transit-taxes-passing-what-will-your-money-buy/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/election-2014-transit-taxes-passing-what-will-your-money-buy/#comments Wed, 05 Nov 2014 21:51:51 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=291158

(WSB photos by Torin Record-Sand)
West Seattle Metro riders will get more buses with the money from Transportation Benefit District Prop 1, which got 59 percent of the first round of the November 4th vote. That’s according to the “framework of an agreement on transit funding and service delivery between Seattle and King County,” as distributed at today’s post-election briefing downtown, with city and county leaders including Mayor Ed Murray, County Executive Dow Constantine, and City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen, plus local transit advocates. We recorded it all on video (added, 3:05 pm):

Here are the West Seattle highlights, as promised in a 2-page doc distributed today (see it here):

*A list of “neighborhoods that will get more buses” includes Admiral, Alaska Junction, Alki, Arbor Heights, Delridge, Fauntleroy, Gatewood, Morgan Junction, Pigeon Point, Roxhill, Westwood Village

*”More buses on … chronically overcrowded routes” including RapidRide C Line, starting next June

*”Revised schedules on … chronically unreliable” routes including RapidRide C Line, 21X, 21, 37, 55, 56, also to start next June

*”Better frequency with more trips per hour on at least 28 high-demand routes” including RapidRide C Line and 125; this is to be “phased in between June and September 2015″

Also promised: An “expanded network of frequent transit,” defined as every 15 minutes or better.

So how will you be sure you’re getting something for your money? Another handout sheet (see it here) promises:

The agreement will:

-Require robust ridership and performance data reporting by Metro
-Allow for regular financial reviews and independent third-party audits of Metro finances and performance data
-Reduce city responsibility for county administrative overhead
-Credit Seattle for higher farebox revenue roduced on city trolleybus routes
-Pay only the annual share of new buses required for increased service
-Protect against supplanting

Constantine reiterated at today’s event that the extra funding is only a “bridge” until the Legislature fixes transportation funding someday.

Transit advocates who were there included West Seattleite Marci Carpenter:

(By the way, we learned today that Carpenter is now the president of the National Federation of the Blind-Washington – congratulations!)

P.S. In case you forgot the details of Proposition 1, here’s the heart of it, from the ballot:

To fund transit service in Seattle, the Seattle Transportation Benefit District seeks voter approval to impose an annual vehicle-license fee up to an additional $60 per vehicle, with a $20 rebate for low-income individuals, and an additional sales-and-use tax of no more than 0.1%. Each would expire no later than December 31, 2020. Combined, they would raise approximately $45,000,000 annually.

After administrative costs, including the rebate program, revenue will be used to fund: (1) Metro Transit service hours on routes with more than 80% of their stops within Seattle, with funding first being used to preserve existing routes and prevent Metro’s proposed service cuts and restructures scheduled to start in February 2015; (2) up to $3,000,000 annually, to support regional transit service on bus routes that enter or terminate service within the City of Seattle; and (3) up to $2,000,000 annually, to improve and to support access to transit service for low-income transit riders.

Any remaining revenues may be used to address overcrowding, reliability, and service frequency within the City of Seattle. Revenues will not supplant other funding for any routes partially or completely operating within Seattle that Metro would otherwise provide in accordance with the adopted Metro Transit Service Guidelines. More about this proposal can be found at: http://www.seattle.gov/stbd/documents/resolution_12_s.pdf

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Watching for updated election results? 2 sets tonight, beyond http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/watching-for-updated-election-results-2-sets-tonight-beyond/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/watching-for-updated-election-results-2-sets-tonight-beyond/#comments Wed, 05 Nov 2014 20:29:02 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=291161 Waiting to see what the second round of vote totals looks like? King County Elections just announced plans for TWO daily updates for the rest of the week:

King County Elections will post two sets of general election results reports today and for the rest of this week due to the volume of last-minute voters returning ballots. The Elections Department will issue a first set of results by 4:30 p.m. as planned, along with a second set of results by 8:00 p.m.

King County Elections has received about 518,000 ballots to date for the general election, not counting a substantial number of drop box returns yesterday. Ballots will continue to arrive, however, they must have valid postmarks indicating that they were mailed on or before election day in order for them to be processed and counted.

Each voter’s signature must be verified before a ballot is opened, inspected, scanned, and ultimately tabulated. Ballots that come in that are damaged, reflect write-in votes or were not voted consistent with the directions, require additional handling and time to process. On average, a ballot takes a little more than a day to process so it can be added to the results report.

You can use the King County Ballot Tracker to see if your ballot was received and signature verified. (Example: We dropped ours at one of the vans on Monday. Ballot Tracker shows they’ve been received.) And you’ll find the latest results update here.

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2014 Election results: Local ballot measures – transit, monorail, preschool, more http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/2014-election-results-local-ballot-measures-transit-monorail-preschool-more/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/2014-election-results-local-ballot-measures-transit-monorail-preschool-more/#comments Wed, 05 Nov 2014 04:14:24 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=291083 The election-night vote count for King County is in, and here’s how the local ballot measures are going:

TRANSPORTATION BENEFIT DISTRICT PROPOSITION #1results here
59 percent yes, 41 percent no

*Added 9:13 pm: Mayor Murray issued a statement saying in part, “Great cities need great mass transit – and Seattle is a great city. Seattle voters understand that, and today’s passage of Prop 1 is the next step to getting the transit system that Seattle wants and that Seattle needs. With today’s vote, we are now able to do something that has eluded elected leaders of this City for decades, and that’s significantly add to existing transit service in Seattle.”

*Added 11:52 pm: Murray, County Executive Dow Constantine, City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen and others will meet the media downtown Wednesday morning to talk about what’s next now that Prop 1, which includes a car-tab fee and sales-tax increase, has passed. We’ll be there.

PROPOSED TRANSPORTATION AUTHORITY, CITIZENS’ PETITION (MONORAIL)results here
80 percent no, 20 percent yes

SEATTLE PRESCHOOL MEASURES – This is a two-part set of results – here (“should either measure become law?” and here (which is preferred, 1A or 1B)
Should one become law? 65 percent yes, 35 percent no
Which one? 67 percent for 1B, 33 percent for 1A

HIGHLINE PUBLIC SCHOOLS BOND MEASURE: Results here
57 percent yes, 43 percent no (note: 60 percent approval is required for passage)

MORE RESULTS: Other county results are here.

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Election 2014: Statewide ballot measures I-594, I-591, I-1351; Legislature, Congress races http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/election-2014-statewide-ballot-measures-i-594-i-591-i-1351-and-more/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/11/election-2014-statewide-ballot-measures-i-594-i-591-i-1351-and-more/#comments Wed, 05 Nov 2014 04:12:58 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=291090 In this story, we’re tracking the big statewide measures for starters, and will add other regional results, including Legislature and Congress races. The initiative numbers, you should note, will change often, since results are coming in from counties all over the state, and some will be counting all night long (unlike here in King County, where there won’t be a second count until tomorrow). We’ll update the initiative results, with time notations, as often as we can, in the hours ahead.

I-594 (FIREARMS) – results here
9:09 pm – 59.72% yes, 40.28% no

I-591 (FIREARMS) – results here
9:09 pm – 45.44% yes, 54.56% no

I-1351 (CLASS SIZE) – results here
9:09 pm update – 49.43% yes, 50.57% no

STATEWIDE ADVISORY VOTES – results linked here

U.S. HOUSE, DISTRICT 7 – results here
Jim McDermott, 80%
Craig Keller, 20%

STATE SENATE, 34TH DISTRICTresults here
Sharon Nelson, 98% (unopposed)

STATE HOUSE POSITION 1, 34TH DISTRICT
Eileen Cody, 98% (unopposed) – results here

STATE HOUSE POSITION 2, 34TH DISTRICTresults here
Joe Fitzgibbon, 81%
Brendan Kolding , 18%

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Voted yet? Ballot vans back in West Seattle, Greenbridge tomorrow http://westseattleblog.com/2014/10/voted-yet-ballot-dropoff-vans-back-in-west-seattle-greenbridge-tomorrow/ http://westseattleblog.com/2014/10/voted-yet-ballot-dropoff-vans-back-in-west-seattle-greenbridge-tomorrow/#comments Fri, 31 Oct 2014 17:25:27 +0000 WSB http://westseattleblog.com/?p=290540 checkbox.jpgTuesday is Election Day; more like Election Deadline Day ever since our state converted to voting by mail. If you haven’t sent in your ballot yet, three of the next four days bring visits by the King County Elections ballot-dropoff vans. Same spots as recent elections – on the driveway into West Seattle Stadium (4432 35th SW) and on the street outside Greenbridge Library (9720 8th SW). Both locations are scheduled for 10 am-5 pm tomorrow and Monday, 10 am-8 pm Tuesday. No postage needed if you’re taking your ballot to a van or to the 24-hour dropboxes elsewhere in the county, but you DO need correct postage if you’re mailing yours. If you’ve already sent in/dropped off your ballot, track it online. Two other links of potential interest: Sample ballot here; pamphlet info here.

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