To The Editor
May 26, 2009
Editorial missed the point on amendment protecting open spaceThe Press was extraordinarily shortsighted and naive in its editorial (May 13) denigrating a proposed King County charter amendment to better protect county-owned parks and open space lands from future exploitation.
Far from “protecting land that nobody wants to develop anyway,” this amendment would add much-needed protection to open space lands that are essential to our quality of life and a sustainable ecosystem and are, in fact, greatly desired for development.
Are you forgetting our own city’s attempts to site a huge water reservoir within county wildlife corridor lands on Squak Mountain that ended only after a lengthy, time-consuming fight by citizens? Do you really think developers wouldn’t love to get their hands on Cougar Mountain Wildland Park to cover it in homes like Newport Hills or Talus? And how might county leaders react if offered $1 billion to sell this park? Have you missed the battle over the “donut hole” lands in Maple Valley?
The only thing protecting county lands now is political will and public pressure. In the future, financial or population pressures or the whims of politicians and their contributors who prioritize development and money over parks or the environment (remember Bush’s assault on federal lands?) could cause any of the county lands that we naively think are protected to instead be sold to the highest bidder. Is that what we want? Do we dare risk that?
That is precisely why this charter amendment is needed — to require any such decision to be subject to a vote of the people. You need to think toward the long-term future, not just today, and realize that if we hope to ensure the protection of these lands against development, financial or political pressures that they may face in 20-50 years, then we cannot leave their fate solely in the hands or at the whims of political faces that come and go.
Many contributed to the success of school play ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’
I would like to thank you and Chantelle Lusebrink in particular for the article that ran May 13 about Skyline High School’s production of “Jesus Christ Superstar.”
I would also like to acknowledge the tremendous amount of work that the other directors and adult company members put into creating the production. Nancy Ziebart had the Herculean task of training the actors for all of the singing in the show — and remember, it’s an opera! She deserves much of the credit for the success of the production.
Dave Pitt directed the orchestra and conducted the show, another daunting task that he handled beautifully. Becky Fowler and Robin Holland contributed hours and hours of time playing piano/organ for the show, and Robin also put together our terrific program using artwork provided by Skyline student Kacy Hardin.
Putting on a musical, especially, requires the talents and dedication of numerous individuals, and to each of them, the cast and I offer our heartfelt thanks.
Director, Skyline High School
Once more about City Council role in Sound Transit plans
If you drove a car or rode a bus last week on Interstate 90, when express lanes were being closed for repairs, it must have given you a feeling what it would be like when light rail will take express lanes for its exclusive use away from buses and carpools.
That should remind all of the people living in the I-90 corridor (Issaquah, Sammamish, North Bend, etc.) how much they depend on I-90, good traffic and bus public transportation. Also, with the economy down, we start to hear about possible cuts in bus service because of King County Metro budget problems.
At the same time this week, the Bellevue City Council would try to put an even bigger hole in the common transportation budget by requesting tunnel option for future light rail.
It’s worth mentioning that Bellevue is serviced very well already by buses compared to the other cities. Do they really need light rail there at all? And if light rail is going to be built anyway, shall the Issaquah City Council look and give recommendations how to best utilize transportation dollars, so they would do good for Issaquah residents as well? For instance, build some transportation hub for easy transfer from light rail to buses going on I-90?
Thank you to all who helped raise $16,000 at Kiwanis event
On behalf of the Kiwanis Club of Issaquah, thank you to all who helped make the 32nd annual Issaquah Community Benefit Auction on April 25 at the Hilton Garden Inn such a huge success. Your generosity raised more than $16,000 just for our fund-an-item partner, Eastside Baby Corner.
Thank you to the businesses and individuals that provided sponsorships: RH2 Engineering, Comcast, J. R. Hayes & Sons, Microsoft, Puget Sound Energy, EPK Benefits, Ogden Murphy Wallace PLLC, Overlake Hospital, Port Blakely Companies, Rowley Properties, Swedish Medical Center, CH2M Hill, Parsons, Brinkerhoff and Watts Properties LLC.
Thank you to everyone who purchased tables, donated auction items and volunteered at the event. The Key Club members at Issaquah High School, Liberty High School and the Pacific Cascade Freshman Campus helped in countless ways. We couldn’t have done it without you!
And because of you, we will be able to continue to help those most in need in our community. We are both proud of and deeply grateful to this wonderful community we are privileged to be a part of. Thank you again.
Judy Rogers, president/Keith Watts, auction chair
Kiwanis Club of Issaquah
Rules of the road
The law is clear when it comes to pedestrians using city crosswalks
Laws are designed to make everyone safer, no argument. But there is an element of trust in obeying the laws, and that is that others will also obey them.
So, the Sammamish writer who suggests following the law and stepping out in front of a car because the law says the car must stop is missing the point. The point is that as a pedestrian, I might be on the right side of the law; I just don’t want to be the one who’s dead right.
My goal in writing to the paper is to heighten awareness of drivers who don’t really see pedestrians. Their focus is on other cars and getting to their destination … and maybe to the person on the other end of the phone conversation.
The law states that vehicles must stop for pedestrians in the crosswalk, if they are in the portion of the crosswalk that is in the vehicle’s lane of travel. Big risk for pedestrians! Stopping for me when I’m on the curb waiting to cross (and maybe signaling your intent from inside the car) rather than expecting me to risk life and limb by stepping out into the crosswalk, would be greatly appreciated.
That’s not ignoring the law, that’s being courteous.