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Letter Writer Takes Issue With Councilman's Characterization of Park Expenditure

Bob Style questions the need for the Kirkland parks and roads levies on the Nov. 6 ballot.

 

Dear Editor,

Last night (Wednesday, October 4) at the Finn Hill Neighborhood Association (FHNA) meeting, Kirkland City Councilmember Dave Asher said that adding $10 million of expenditures for Juanita Beach Park does not constitute greater debt.  Who does he think pays the bills?  It’s our debt, not the Council’s, it’s more debt the Council has imposed upon us at a time when they already have the money.  Prop 1 and 2 are not necessary.

By definition, debt is money owed.  If Prop 1 and 2 pass, we the citizens will have to come up with the money in order for the City to balance its budget.

No wonder he doesn't consider it debt.  The Council doesn't pay the bills.  We do; something that politicians persistently forget.  Taking more money out of our pockets reduce our ability to sustain and improve our quality of life especially of those with fixed income.

To think Prop 1 and 2 and their ongoing cost for improvements do not create more debt is ludicrous but it’s the way Councilmember Asher and his political cohorts think.  Now they want us to pay for what they have neglected to do over the past a years.  They failed to allocate funds that meet the needs of the city.

A no vote is necessary to prevent an unnecessary increase in our property taxes and to restore Council responsibility.  Out of their $449 million budget, they already have the money to finance the projects listed in Prop 1 and 2.  All they need to do is to quit spending our money on other things that come at the expense of our parks and roads.

Robert L. Style, Kirkland

bigyaz October 05, 2012 at 06:05 PM
Brilliant, Ron. The city is not looking to BORROW money. It's asking for a tax from its citizens to pay for these expenditures. If you can't differentiate that from a debt I can't help you.
Dave Asher October 05, 2012 at 11:19 PM
No one is adding $10M to expenditures for Juanita Beach Park, nor are there any thoughts of debt funding for Juanita Beach Park. Neither is there any debt associated with Proposition 1 or 2. Those are the facts. As to "taking more money out of our pockets," the propositions are on the ballot to ask Kirkland if we support recommendations to maintain & improve our quality of life. Many people worked long and hard to try to fund the legitimate needs of the community with existing resources. What these ballot measures say is that, despite our best efforts at balancing resources with needs, we need additional resources to maintain and improve these 2 important aspects of our community - streets & parks. It was a very difficult decision to ask our fellow citizens, not once but on 2 ballot measures, to step up so we can maintain the quality of our City. It was the unamious recommendation of the City Council to seek your approval on the upcoming ballot.
Ellen Handrick October 09, 2012 at 04:48 AM
A tax to pay for this would not be considered a debt? Really?!?! Semantics. It is money owed and the tax is payment for that debt. You should be ashamed of yourself, Mr. Asher. Liar.
Ellen Handrick October 09, 2012 at 05:54 AM
If you would actually like to improve the quality of life for the residents as far as parks are concerned, consider returning garbage cans and garbage pick-up to the parks that day visitors and tourists DON'T see. The neighborhood parks. It wouldn't cost 10 million or lure in any tourists but people who live here would appreciate it. Is that on this measure?
Shelley Kloba October 12, 2012 at 07:40 AM
In the spirit of doing more with less, as our city staff has become accustomed to doing in this downturn, they got creative with the trash situation. As you may recall, it was determined that with the decreased parks maintenance staff, we would have to discontinue trash pickup in the small neighborhood parks. They primarily are used by people who live locally, and who could reasonably be expected to pack out their trash. This was not a popular idea, however, and when the city was renegotiating its contract with Waste Management, they added in a deal that WM would empty the trash cans at no extra charge during their normal routes thru the neighborhoods, so long as the city moved the trash cans nearer to the street so that they can be quickly and efficiently emptied by WM personnel. They found a way to get the job done at no extra cost to the city. This is an example of how our city employees try their best everyday to provide the services we need for the lowest cost, and when faced with a problem, will apply creative solutions. SO , no, garbage pick-up is not on this measure.

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