To The Editor

October 22, 2008

By Contributor

Decision 2008

Thumbs up on Sound Transit Prop. 1

This year promises to be the most exciting election year ever. So, as you cast your vote, don’t overlook a measure further down on the ballot — one that will improve your commute and is good for the environment. Vote yes on Proposition 1, the regional measure to expand mass transit.

We are supporting Prop 1 for two primary reasons.

One — Prop 1 is the transit solution for the future at the cost of about a tank of gas — $69 a year for the average adult.

Two — Prop 1 is good for the Eastside and it is good for Issaquah. Here are the reasons why:

The Eastside will receive more investment than any other part of King, Pierce or Snohomish counties — 35 percent of the entire regional package.

Prop 1 will bring light rail to Bellevue in 2020 and to the Microsoft campus in Redmond in 2021 while connecting to the light rail system from Seattle to Sea Tac, which will open next year.

There is also a light rail planning study in Prop 1 that would position Issaquah at the top of the list for future light rail expansion. In the interim, our community would receive more vitally needed bus service beginning in 2009.

Some say this isn’t the perfect plan. We cannot afford to debate this any longer. If Prop 1 does not pass, it will be another 40 years before we have an opportunity to provide relief from high gas prices and gridlock while long-term investments in light rail provide jobs, improve our quality of life and protect the environment.

Please join us Nov. 4 and vote yes for Prop 1. Let’s give the Eastside and our citizens the transit system they deserve. It will only cost the average adult about $69 per year — just one tank of gas. It is a small price to pay for improving your commute and making the region a better place for our children.

Ava Frisinger, mayor

Fred Butler, city councilman

Anderson’s prompt answer to queries another reason he deserves your vote

In the past two years, I have had occasion to ask Rep. Glenn Anderson for help answering questions involving the Issaquah School District, the state Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, rulings and state law.

These questions involved several e-mails and the work of his research team. He was always quick to respond and answered each question thoroughly. I was most grateful for his knowledge and willingness to find my “answers.”

I urge you to keep Rep. Anderson in Olympia working for us.

Janell Wildermuth

Issaquah

School boundary review

Committee ignored objectives by moving children from West Highlands Park

Once again, I am disappointed in the reasoning and close-mindedness of the Issaquah School District’s Boundary Review Committee.

On Oct. 15, members reaffirmed their decision to move West Highlands Park out of Clark and into Grand Ridge, and do the reverse for Overdale. I would be more accepting of the decision if I thought the committee had used a rigorous fact-based approach to understanding and analyzing the issue instead of the goat rodeo we witnessed Wednesday night.  Unfortunately, I’ve seen this happen with many committee decisions.

The discussions were shortsighted and focused on today’s enrollment instead of looking at the enrollment projections two to 10 years out. The saddest part was the acceptance that some students must suffer for the greater good when there is in fact no need to create this hardship and no evidence of greater good.

Here are the facts that the committee ignored when it decided to go forward with the neighborhood swap: Despite the objective to raise attendance at Clark, by 2012 Clark would have gained 24 more children than today if the two communities remained where they are. Likewise, Grand Ridge would have 24 fewer children, giving it much needed capacity for growth. The committee made mistakes on both fronts at odds with key objectives of both schools.

The committee also used busing as a reason, but the facts were wrong and thus misled voting members. The fact is that both communities need to be bused to their schools no matter which schools they go to.

Yes, the committee proposal might make sense if West Highlands is never built, but that community’s construction is well under way. It will be a very sad day in 2010 when the children in West Highlands Park attending Clark will be shifted to Grand Ridge in order to make it a “Highlands-only” school and thus, boot out long-established Overdale Park to a distant school with no community ties.

Doug Wood

Issaquah

Traffic safety

With classes back in session, 20 mph   is the speed limit in a school zone

Now that we have been back in school for a month, we would hope that people would remember the speed limit is 20 mph while driving through active school zones. In some school zones, 20 mph is the speed limit “when children are present.” In other school zones, 20 mph is the speed limit when the yellow lights are flashing.

We are astonished, not only at the people who speed past us while we try to safely get school children across, but at the nasty words, hand gestures and dirty looks that we receive daily. Meanwhile, many drivers are speeding up the street to get to where they need to go, at the potential risk of injuring a child who may dart out into the road, especially around the elementary schools!

This is a reminder — please, please, please remember that the speed limit in a school zone is 20 mph. If you forget, there are red flags, flashing yellow lights and at one school, crossing guards hold up a “20” as a reminder.

Please help us to keep our children safe by slowing down. It only takes a minute or two out of your whole day to slow down!

If you cared enough to read this, please care enough to remind your teenage children, your neighbors, friends or even your parents about the speed limit. And remember that we crossing guards, who are putting our lives “at risk” while trying to safely get school children across, are just trying to make it safer for the children.

Sadly, when a child gets hit, then people slow down. Our goal is to prevent that tragedy from happening in the first place!

Thank you!

Molly McDonell and Martha Ross

On behalf of Issaquah School District crossing guards in Issaquah and Sammamish

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