To the Editor

January 21, 2014

By Contributor

School levies

Vote yes for high-quality, award-winning schools

Happy New Year! As an elementary school principal in the Issaquah downtown area I have the amazing opportunity to work and live in the center of our city daily. I love Issaquah!

The families, the businesses, and the amazing art and sport communities make Issaquah a quality place to raise a family or own a home. Another main attraction for people to move and thrive in Issaquah is our award-winning schools.

Our district is extremely responsible with the management of the funds it receives and it is vital for our continued success that we all vote “yes” on Feb. 11 for our replacement levy. These funds are necessary for regular operation of our school, such as salaries, lights, copying and buses. Many are surprised that the state does not fund these items fully — but unfortunately voters still need to support the basic needs of our schools in part.

Here is what a “yes” vote will maintain for the Issaquah district:

4Four-year Maintenance and Operations Levy in the following amounts: $44.5 million in 2015, $48 million in 2016, $51.5 million in 2017 and $54 million in 2018.

4One-year Transportation Levy in the amount of $1.7 million in 2015.

4Four-year Critical Repairs/Technology levy in the following amounts: $11.4 million in 2015, $12.05 million in 2016, $13.59 million in 2017 and $14.89 million in 2018.

Our district and city are one of the best in the state! We need this vote to maintain this level of quality. It is so reassuring to work for a city that values its schools, and a district that is responsible and collaborative with the city. Thanks in advance to all the voters of Issaquah — we appreciate you!

For me, it’s an easy choice and decision. Please vote yes for the upcoming Issaquah School District levies.

Diane Holt, principal

Issaquah Valley Elementary School

 

Vote yes for the best investment in our future

 

I am writing to offer my support, and that of the Greater Issaquah Chamber of Commerce, for the Issaquah School District levies, which citizens will vote on in February.

The chamber, in serving as the voice of more than 500 businesses representing more than 50,000 local and regional employees, strongly supports these measures and urges a yes vote.

Local funding for our schools provides truly critical resources for our kids. Without this funding, the quality of their education will suffer. In a highly-competitive global economy for talent, this is the best investment we can make in our future and the right thing to do to support our local students.

It is also important to note that the quality of the Issaquah School District, made possible through strong district leadership, outstanding parental involvement, teaching excellence, and strong corporate and individual contributions through the Issaquah Schools Foundation, offers a major economic advantage to our community.

Potential residents and new businesses seek out the best school districts to locate their families and enterprises, respectively, and Issaquah is among the top contenders. This helps property values, job growth and economic vitality. The performance and reputation of our school district was also one of the major community and economic strengths identified recently by the city of Issaquah’s Economic Vitality Commission in its community SWOT analysis. Let’s keep this going.

In the post-Great Recession reality where job creation and helping citizens find meaningful employment must be a top priority for policy makers and citizens alike, support for our local schools is one way local citizens can help contribute to the future of our kids and our community.

I urge your support in helping our children thrive and our community prosper by supporting the three Issaquah school levies.

Matthew Bott, chief executive officer

Greater Issaquah Chamber of Commerce

 

Klahanie annexation

Vote no to Issaquah, better police services from Sammamish

 

A traffic jam that occurred across the country recently caused a political furor. It was in a small New Jersey community, on a plateau. This incident made international headlines and may have influenced the political career of a well-known governor. The governor, in a televised press conference, spent two hours apologizing for a top aide that supposedly concocted the event.

But the big story was that this so called political traffic-gate may have caused the death of a person trying to get emergency help.

I couldn’t imagine how anxious, regretful and guilty this once-employed staff member felt, after realizing the consequences of a decision to snarl traffic and delay life-supporting vehicles.

However, as a resident of Klahanie, I might one day collectively share that same feeling if a future delay in emergency services response time cause a similar event. This can be a possibility if, on Feb. 11, the majority of us do not vote no on annexation to Issaquah.

Police and road services can be provided more efficiently to the Klahanie residents from the local Sammamish city services than from Issaquah. Police services to Klahanie are currently provided by the King County Sheriff’s Office. In fact, Sammamish police officers are King County Sheriff’s Office deputies and back up the sheriff’s office on calls.

If we don’t ensure the timely flow and centralization of Klahanie emergency services, our West Coast plateau can be an East Coast plateau.

Voting no on annexation to Issaquah will provide Klahanie with the opportunity to annex to Sammamish.

All safety is local.

Alan G. Mindrebo

Issaquah

 

Plastic bags

Vote no on Proposition 1

The plastic bag ban is working in Issaquah and Seattle. I pick up litter from a stretch of roadside in my neighborhood, and I have noticed an abrupt decrease in plastic bags since the ban.

Yes, it requires a little more thought to remember to bring your own reusable bags into the store, but it quickly becomes a habit. One still has the choice to reuse or recycle plastic produce bags, bread bags, newspaper bags and other plastic packaging one receives while reducing the overall number of plastic bags used.

Food scraps no longer need bagging — they can go directly into a sink-side reusable container and then be dumped periodically into a yard-waste toter for composting at Cedar Grove, keeping both food wastes and plastics out of our landfills.

Most plastic packaging films and plastic containers are recycled by Cleanscapes, allowing homeowners to save on garbage costs by enabling many to switch to once-a-month trash pick-up of the few wastes that can’t be either composted or recycled.

Banning the “free” distribution of certain plastic bags has spurred the dialog of reducing waste. Let’s not take a step backward. I don’t want to go back to paying for the cost of someone else’s “free bags,” which are added to the cost of the goods I buy.

Please remember to vote, and show Issaquah cares for the environment by voting “no” on Proposition 1.

Janet Wall

Issaquah

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Comments

2 Responses to “To the Editor”

  1. Rob Young on January 22nd, 2014 5:58 pm

    As Plateau residents, we have an interesting vote due February 11th, 2014. We must vote YES to annex our 18 jurisdictions in the Klahanie PAA to the City of Issaquah.

    Simply put, this is our last chance to do this. The City of Issaquah is prepared to annex us with a YES vote, and will not with a NO vote. We have no guarantees past this, other than to stay Unincorporated in King County. The process to get this election has taken over three years and hundreds of volunteer man-hours which your neighbors have conducted.

    This is not a comparison between Issaquah vs. Sammamish, and it concerns me that detractors from this effort continue to try and lead you to believe it is. If that were really true, there would not actually be vote on February 11th, as Sammamish would have (and should have) gotten the annexation done years ago after the 2005 failed vote to Issaquah. Did they do it? Nope, not even a minor attempt. They are only stepping forward at the 11th hour to protect special interests and block Issaquah. That concerns me even more.

    I have been a resident in Klahanie for over 24 years. We deserve to lower our taxes! I can think of dozens of ways I’ll enjoy spending the approx. $1,000/year savings I’ll see in my household. And since we are paying for it, we deserve services we don’t really get today, like police, road services, repairs, and government representation. We deserve to be a city, and the only way to do this is to vote YES to annex to Issaquah on February 11th.

    And by the way, two YES votes please; Annexation and Issaquah School Bonds!

  2. Fred Stark on January 26th, 2014 10:41 am

    As a resident Klahanie homeowner since 1995, I’ve a keen sense of deja vu regarding the current annexation going’s on. I voted for Issaquah annexation in 2004, and did so again- mailing my ballot yesterday. Why? because then and now everything was in writing and was and is now a good deal. The opposition offers only down the road “promises”. Klahanie’s last interaction with Sammamish was their offer to take over maintenance of the Big Rock Park during King County’s financial crisis. Klahanie citizen’s rallied to reject this benevolence when it was discovered that Sammamish had plans to dramatically expand park use and put in lights on the ball field. I don’t trust these people, you shouldn’t either.

    Fred Stark

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