October 1, 2013
Ordinance is behavior modification gone awry
More than 3,000 signatures have been obtained from local citizenry to let us vote yea or nay on the city’s bag ban. This is significant support for the right to put an issue before the people.
Here are some facts …
1) shoplifting is eight times higher in towns with plastic bag bans
2) plastic bags are sanitary and reusable … and they are reused, contrary to assertions otherwise
3) the volume of trash from our wonderful local coffee shops far exceeds any quantity of plastic bags allegedly laying all over our city streets and in landfills
4) there is no proof banning plastic bags improves the environment
5) bag bans punish customers
6) the ordinance includes no method for measuring alleged reductions in waste
7) unsanitary poly-cloth and plastic-coated bags have no proven benefit as alternative to plastic or paper bags
8) polyester is a petrochemical fiber … it’s plastic!
This ordinance is behavior modification gone awry complete with financial punishment for noncompliance. Like taxes, once there is a foot in the door, more like it will surely come. Several council members have stated as much.
If we don’t vote this out, be sure another like it is on the way.
Please download, sign and mail the petition for ordinance repeal at http://saveourchoice.wordpress.com.
Do not commercialize, destroy this beautiful area
After reading the article in the Sept. 16 edition of The Issaquah Press I am incensed that the city’s Economic Development Department would even consider the commercialization of the Lake Sammamish State park waterfront.
Of the three proposals submitted, only the Issaquah Soccer Club’s proposal makes any sense. Why would you destroy the beauty of the remaining undeveloped portion of the lakefront with a restaurant and or a hotel/ convention center?
With commercialization come pollution, the destruction of natural resources, critical animal habitat, etc. As more and more less-than-thought-out decisions are made with regard to how “Issaquah should look in the future” the more and more we are going to be a mere extension of Bellevue.
What’s wrong with letting Bellevue be Bellevue and keeping Issaquah the way it is, a small friendly town with a small friendly feel? We don’t need to look and feel like a big city. My guess is the majority of residents feel the same way.
Something smells about this situation
I was shocked to see the celebration of the donation by a local car dealer of vehicles to be used by the Issaquah Police. How can this not be illegal influence peddling? If it’s not illegal, it certainly carries the stink of insider relationships.
I would strongly urge the city to return these “donations” and to purchase what the police need through the usual processes. We don’t need Issaquah to look like so many places where local businesses get special treatment.
Gender wage gap
New numbers are not so new
On Sept. 17, the U.S. Census Bureau released new data on the gender wage gap — but there’s nothing “new” about it. In 2012, women still earned just 77 cents, on average, for every dollar earned by their male counterparts. That number hasn’t budged in the past decade, and it’s lower for women of color.
Washington, D.C., has closed the gap to 90 cents and Wyoming was at the bottom of the list at 64 cents. In Washington state, a man earns $52.53 to a woman’s $41.06. We were number 25 on the list of states at 78 cents. Use this information when you go to any candidate forms this fall; ask a question about where they stand on the wage gap.
There is a bill trying to get out of committee onto the floor of our U.S. Congress for a vote, and it needs public support. Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell support this bill; Rep. Dave Reichert is not on record as supporting Paycheck Fairness Act H.R. 377/S.84. Thanks to those who support this bill!
Issaquah AAUW Branch
All drivers need to pay more attention
A bad start to the day — on Sept. 18, I was returning from a walk at about 8 a.m. and was waiting for the light on Newport Way and Sunset Way.
A 927 local bus was (apparently) running far behind schedule, for as soon as the light changed (the walk sign came on and the voice said I could cross) the bus made a fast right, right in from of me. I jumped back, and then a car behind the bus almost hit me, as it followed closely behind the bus. And then, I was almost hit by a woman turning left onto Newport.
All this happened in a matter of seconds and I still had the light! Usually Issaquah drivers are pretty considerate and will often stop if you are near the crosswalk. But that day, I was in the way, even though I was trying to cross legally. I’m glad I got home safe, and I hope they slowed down.
October 1, 2013
Grand Ridge Plaza is on the grow
Grand Ridge Plaza in the Issaquah Highlands is growing, and growing and growing after years of stops and starts, and false starts and stops.
If you watched it grow in the past months, you could hardly believe all the workers could get done in a short period. You’d go up there on a Monday and there would be a wooden shell of a building, and then go back on Thursday and it would be nearly done. It was a sight to behold.
If you haven’t been there in a while, you are in for a shock on your next visit. It’s like a huge outdoor mall has sprouted and spread. I don’t know if it’s what the highlands residents bargained for or wanted, but it’s shiny and new, and pretty awesome in my opinion.
October 1, 2013
Rain, rain, go away, Salmon Days here to stay
Rain, rain, so much rain. There may be more than one benefit to all the rain of the past few days, but in Issaquah there is one species that is welcoming the rushing creek waters.
Welcome home, salmon. This gush is just for you.
But now that the creek flow is strong and swift, calling the salmon home, the rain can quit. We’ve got a party coming on and 150,000 guests are due to arrive this weekend.
September 24, 2013
State park proposals have merits, limits
Washington State Parks needs to seek specific Requests for Proposals for improvements to Lake Sammamish State Park, the jewel at the mouth of Issaquah Creek.
Earlier this month, State Parks and the city of Issaquah received only three proposals in response to its call for RFPs. The two agencies were trying to get outside-the-box ideas that would add to Lake Sammamish park’s bottom line as well as help the city’s economic development.
The three each have merits.
September 24, 2013
Go places, learn new things on the cheap
Do you have a King County library card? At the low price of free, it’s one of the best values on the planet.
I’ve been an avid reader since I was a little kid. Oh, the lives and worlds I’ve escaped into. Books can do that.
I still have my first library card, which I got when I was 5. I also have my library awards from reading contests when I was a child. If they said read 50 books, I read 100. Ahh, nostalgia.
September 24, 2013
What is the city afraid of anyway?
The city of Issaquah has not been very happy to actually let its citizens have their own opinions for quite some time. The administration has long had a culture that punishes dissent, and anything that they do resembling a mistake doesn’t require an apology and change, but a bigger bunker to hide behind, and usually some nasty finger pointing.
More recently, the city has become even more protective, removing the history of much of the city information from the website and requiring information requests for that which was formerly publicly available. I want to be clear here that most of the staff does not act this way and they actually are interested in what people have so say. (Yes, indeed, there are the occasional exceptions.)
The City Council tends to get only the information that the administration wants to provide to achieve, seemingly, iron-fisted control and unsustainable growth of our city.
What is lost in Issaquah right now is the idea that a town is created and run for its people, and the very baseline of a 5-star city is complete and accurate information for the people so that they can inform the process.
Instead, Issaquah’s administration is hiding the information and making it difficult for anyone to effectively engage. What are they so afraid of … people realizing that the emperor has no clothes?
September 17, 2013
City’s cybersquatting is wrong on all levels
The city of Issaquah spent tax dollars to trick taxpayers.
Just let that sink in for a minute.
Issaquah and the Sammamish Plateau Water and Sewer District have been involved in a series of disagreements of late. One of the more recent involved Issaquah’s plan to use a water filtration system a few hundred feet from one of the district’s wells. Issaquah says it will be fine; the district fears contaminated water.
September 17, 2013
Government shouldn’t operate in secrecy
Regarding The Issaquah Press article “Issaquah hoodwinks Sammamish Plateau Sewer and Water District customers,” we should all be disappointed.
‘’Democracies die behind closed doors,’’ wrote Judge Damon J. Keith, of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, in a ruling handed down in 2002 regarding secret visa courts.
The citizens of Issaquah have the right to know that their government is conducting their business fairly and lawfully so when our mayor and City Council undertake the sort of deceptive practices described in the article, we should all be furious.
September 17, 2013
There is not what we would call an identity crises going on among the two- and four-legged residents of the humble Farrar household, but we could probably hit the nail on the head if our identities were described as highly flexible.
You will understand if I simply say that the cats think they are dogs or sometimes humans, the dogs think they are humans, the husband thinks he is a cat or dog or sometimes a wife, and the wife thinks she is a dog or cat or sometimes a husband.
Smudge, one of our three cats, always wants to eat what the people are eating. She enjoys rice cakes, fudge bars, olives, yogurt, vegetable soup and spaghetti.
Our dogs Bairn and Ilsa live on the furniture and watch TV with us, always “help” us read the paper, never let us out of their sight and don’t bat an eye when Smudge, Smokey and Flash walk around them rubbing their foreheads under the dogs’ chins.
September 10, 2013
Now hiring! Local opportunities abound
Looking for a job? Issaquah has become the land of opportunity!
When the Growth Management Act was adopted by the state more than 20 years ago, one goal was to encourage job growth near homes, with the aim of cutting down on traffic and new roads.
This fall, Issaquah’s growth at Grand Ridge Plaza, as well as new businesses spurred by a rebounding economy, have led to numerous new job positions being created.