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LETTERS

Your opinion counts: To submit an item or photo for publication in The Mirror, e-mail editor@ federalwaymirror.com; mail attn Letters, Federal Way Mirror, 1414 S. 324th St., Suite B-210, Federal Way, WA 98003; fax (253) 925-5750. Letters may be edited for style, clarity and length.

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F E D E R A L WAY

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Rudi Alcott Publisher: ralcott@federalwaymirror.com (253) 925-5565 Andy Hobbs Editor: editor@federalwaymirror.com (253) 925-5565 Advertising (253) 925-5565 Classified Marketplace (253) 925-5565 Letters editor@federalwaymirror.com

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Mirror Editorial

Cheers n’ jeers Cheers to the failure of the Twin Development skyscraper plan. The developer was unable to meet a deadline for buying the AMC Theatres site. The developer planned to tap a federal program that awarded U.S. immigrant status to foreign investors willing to spend $500,000 or more. The problem? No money and no investors. For now, the three skyscrapers will no longer waste the time and energy of Federal Way’s leaders and taxpayers. The proposal was pie-in-the-sky thinking from the start. Thankfully, city leaders recognize that Federal Way needs the tax revenue that comes from developing the site. Here’s hoping the city finds a practical and public solution. Cheers to the Federal Way Noon Rotary Club for donating $20,000 to Communities in Schools (CIS) of Federal Way. The money will strengthen a program that provides positive adult mentors for students who need them. Rotary and CIS are quintessential vehicles for enhancing quality of life within the city’s borders. Any investment of time, money and energy toward the greater good is an investment worth making. Jeers to three Federal Way police officers on bicycles who crossed in the middle of busy South 320th Street on Tuesday morning. Cars had to stop to let the smiling officers cross as they chatted nonchalantly in the middle of the road. Keep up the good work, dear police officers, but please follow the same traffic rules — and use the same crosswalks — as the regular folks. Cheers to resident Jeff Kendig for starting a midnight walking club in Federal Way. The club’s recent inaugural meeting involved two laps around The Commons Mall. Regardless of whether it’s safe to walk around downtown Federal Way at midnight, Kendig deserves kudos for both his courage and community outreach. Jeers to the loss of another downtown Federal Way business, Gen X. Even if you’ve never shopped at the store, the closure hurts — and leaves an empty building at the city’s busiest intersection. Cheers to Wild Waves Theme Park returning to local management under former owner Jeff Stock. Stock formed NorPoint Entertainment specifically for this venture, and plans to add new attractions/rides to Wild Waves. He wants to reinvigorate the park as well as its presence in the community. Local management provides an ideal catalyst for reaching those goals.

Local idealism is alive and well I am pleased to report that idealism is alive in Federal Way. In an ongoing series, The Mirror will highlight efforts that raise Federal Way’s quality of life. Be sure to read about Advancing Leadership Youth’s “One Day Federal Way” project in today’s paper — and mark your calendar. More than 150 volunteers will join the Feb. 22 effort to spruce up the grounds at three schools. The 30 students in Advancing Leadership Youth have the right idea in promoting community pride. Consider the ripple effects when a few hundred people come together for a common cause. The more you put in, the more you get out. Volunteers only want to know that their efforts are appreciated. However, the concept of an annual “One Day Federal Way” brims with potential for mass community involvement, much like the Mayor’s Month of Concern for the Hungry in the fall. Community service is one facet in the quest to improve quality of life. Social gathering spots, both public and private, are also essential to the well being of residents. Poverty Bay Coffee is one worthy example of a “third place,” a term to describe where local people meet regularly for social camaraderie outside of home (“first place”) and work (“second place”). The mom-and-pop coffee shop, located at 1108 S. 322nd Place, will expand by 1,500 square feet while adding a grill and food

Lakota’s parking lot

● L E T T E r S - Y o u r o p i n i o n C o u n ts :

I love (or hate) how the Federal Way Mirror can keep putting out news, letters and columns that provoke me into writing. This time it’s Nandell Palmer’s “Lakota’s parking inconvenience doesn’t make the grade” (Feb. 2) and the dilemma at Lakota Middle School. More pavement for a handful of events? Thanks, but I’ll walk the extra block. My daughter attends Lakota and we went to the culture fair (Italy — on my wife’s side). Yes, we had to park on a side street, but it wasn’t far, and we didn’t have to block anybody’s driveway. Most of us could use the exercise. Also, if you get there early, you can get a spot in the lot. How many times a

year do they max out the parking? A couple of concerts, fairs and a few athletic contests. The rest of the year (three months in the summer) it’s a gray, barren wasteland. Let’s leave the green. I have two more pressing concerns. Most important is the stretch of 13th Avenue SW from SW 316th Street to Lakota: There are no sidewalks and parking on both sides of the street. It’s very dangerous for the students who have to navigate their way, to and from school, often in the dark. As for the drop-off procedure, there is roughly 150 feet of curb to drop off and pick up children, but

storage (completion date will be announced). There are plans to serve beer and wine as well as attract local musicians. Poverty Bay’s regular patrons will appreciate the investment in their favorite third place, and by raising its level of excellence, the coffee shop will strengthen its bond with these patrons. This stronger bond will attract more people who call Poverty Bay their third place. With a little focus, the coffee shop’s investment will strengthen its status as a contagious social environment — and keep more money flowing through Federal Way. One coffee shop can’t do it alone, but the more positive ripples we make for Federal Way’s social wellbeing, the stronger the current will flow. It’s an idea worth repeating. Andy Hobbs

FEDERAL WAY

www.federalwaymirror.com

MIRROR EDITOR

f e d e r a l way

OPINION

[4] February 5, 2011

The idealistic forecast The Federal Way Chamber’s 2011 economic forecast breakfast Jan. 25 delivered a similar message to 2010: The economy will improve later rather than sooner. A keen observation came from panelist Melanie Dressel, CEO of Columbia Bank: If the media reported three straight days of good economic news, “that would give us confidence” of economic recovery. That’s true, but only if people read that good economic news in the first place.

Mirror editor Andy Hobbs: editor@federalwaymirror.com

To submit an item or photo for publication in The Mirror: email editor@federalwaymirror.com; mail attn Letters, Federal Way Mirror, 1414 S. 324th St., Suite B-210, Federal Way, WA 98003; fax (253) 925-5750. Letters may be edited for style, clarity and length. many parents wait in a line to get one of the three spots closest to the entrance, leaving most of the drop-off area unused. The line will back up to the street, and soon people who are trying to leave the parking lot will meet up with cars waiting to turn left into the lot (as more parents/teachers arrive), creating a cicular backup. I have actually witnessed this. It would be quite comical if we all didn’t have to be somewhere, like work. Parents, when there is room, please go to the end of the curb. PS: It is a beautiful campus and building. Good job Federal Way.

Stephen Flavin, Federal Way

If dad rides his bike (Re: “Lakota’s parking inconvenience doesn’t make the grade” by Nandell Palmer, Feb. 2) I hear you, Mr. Palmer. But we get wrapped up in the convenience of automobiles at our peril. Whether the lack of parking was by design, I don’t know, but I do hope it was. Studies show that people with higher levels of education have higher rates of physical activity, smoke less and earn more. Since Lakota has this fabulous program, what a great opportunity for the students and teachers to use their noggins. As

the primary influence on their children’s education (contrary to the beliefs of various blamers), parents would probably have an enormous effect on their children’s behavior with regard to transportation modes: bus, bike, walk, carpool... If dad rides his bike to work, the kids start to see (because dad becomes more fit, sees more of his community, uses less petrol, starts to feel good about his choice to bike, etc.) that, “Hey, it’s kinda cool. Dad’s busting his hump, doing the right thing. I used to think it was dorky to ride my bike to school, but I think I might try to do it.” There’s a certain pride and attitude that comes with biking or walking or using public transpor[ more LETTERS page 5 ]


f e d e r a l way

OPINION

[4] October 9, 2010

COMING

SOON The Mirror’s endorsements for District 30 Legislature and U.S. Congress candidates will run Oct. 16.

WINNER: • Best editorial page • Second place, General Excellence (overall) 2009 Washington Newspaper Publishers Association awards

WINNER: • Best editorial page Suburban Newspapers of America 2009 Editorial Contest

Mirror

.com

F E D E R A L WAY

A Division of Sound Publishing

Rudi Alcott Publisher: ralcott@federalwaymirror.com (253) 925-5565 Andy Hobbs Editor: editor@federalwaymirror.com (253) 925-5565 Advertising (253) 925-5565 Classified Marketplace (253) 925-5565 Letters editor@federalwaymirror.com

1414 S. 324th St., Suite B-210, Federal Way, WA 98003 For delivery inquiries

Toll-free: (253) 872-6610 or e-mail

circulation@federalwaymirror.com

www.federalwaymirror.com

Mirror Editorial

Endorsement: Ferrell for mayor In the November election, Federal Way voters will elect their city’s top leader for the first time. Voters should base their decision on the type of leadership that best serves Federal Way. Both candidates Jim Ferrell for Federal Way mayor — City Councilman Jim Ferrell and State Rep. Skip Priest — will do the job justice. Ferrell created the opportunity for Federal Way voters to elect their mayor. In 2009, voters approved a polarizing initiative that changed the city’s form of government. Skip Priest Almost one year later, the city seems to embrace the concept As a leader, of a popularly elected mayor. Ferrell is more The opposition against an likely to risk elected mayor now seems like a footnote. That election marked rejection in serving the a watershed moment for Federal Way’s government and greater good. As maturation as a city. Ferrell was a leader, Priest the first prominent city leader is more likely to court acceptance to publicly back the elected in serving the mayor effort. Priest is backed by a history greater good. of leadership in Federal Way. In addition to city council service during Federal Way’s early years, Priest’s resume in the state Legislature includes fighting for fair education funding and strengthening sex predator laws. That same influence a few years ago helped stop the local construction of a facility for sex offenders. Priest has logged years of participation on a number of community boards in Federal Way. Priest is appealing as a candidate because of regional contacts and past business experience. A difference has emerged in the candidates’ perceived leadership style. As a leader, Ferrell is more likely to risk rejection in serving the greater good. As a leader, Priest is more likely to court acceptance in serving the greater good. Both of these leadership styles have their benefits and drawbacks. As a current city council member, Ferrell is immersed in the thick of city business operations. Ferrell has demonstrated the ability to take a stand regardless of whether that stand is popular. Priest has demonstrated the ability to take a stand while mostly avoiding any polarizing stances. The primary duty of the elected mayor is to run the city, which means running a business that serves and protects the public. Leadership involves building teamwork, which would be a strength for Priest. Leadership involves the ability to make the tough decision and face the consequences, which would be a strength for Ferrell. Both candidates want what’s best for Federal Way. Both candidates are worthy of becoming Federal Way’s first elected mayor. But only one candidate has been on board with the concept of elected mayor from the start. One candidate has demonstrated the ability to rally for a cause, create positive change for the city and build on a vision. Through relentless passion, courage and conviction, one candidate has earned a chance to finish what he started, rather than riding on the coattails of someone else’s blood, sweat and tears — all shed in the name of making Federal Way a better place, right here and right now. For mayor, The Mirror recommends electing Jim Ferrell.

● L E T T E r S - Y o u r o p i n i o n C o u n ts :

To submit an item or photo for publication in The Mirror: email editor@federalwaymirror.com; mail attn Letters, Federal Way Mirror, 1414 S. 324th St., Suite B-210, Federal Way, WA 98003; fax (253) 925-5750. Letters may be edited for style, clarity and length.

Last weekend for sand sculptures If you haven’t been to the World Championship of Sand Sculpting in Federal Way, you need to go. The area looks trashy on the outside, but it really is nice inside. We use to drive clear to Harrison Hot Springs in Canada to see them and here they are right in our own backyard. What a treasure that is. The display has been extended for a week. Sunday is the deadline. I have been really busy and didn’t have a chance to go until today, but it is well worth your time and effort to go. I encourage you to go. These sculptures are made by real artists and some fantastic work done with sand. You won’t believe it until you see it in person.

Delores Warner, Federal Way

City budget: Misleading info The Oct. 6 article on the city budget explaining the problems faced by the city in 2011 and 2012 relies heavily on the information presented by City Manager Brian Wilson in the series of public meetings that concluded on Sept. 30. There are a few misleading statements in the presentations which are repeated in the article. The article states that Federal Way residents pay less taxes than residents in neighboring communities. The figures quoted in the article are taken directly from the city manager’s presentation and are determined by dividing the General Fund tax and fee revenues by city population, which is quite different to the average amount of taxes paid

by residents. Two factors that can lead to anomalies in this type of analysis are: • Individual city governments determine which taxes are levied and which revenues are directed to the General Fund. • Revenues and taxes are generated by businesses, retail, etc., as well as by city residents, which can lead to major differences on a per capita basis. The presentation lists Tukwila as the highest in tax and fee revenue per capita at over $1,100. With Federal Way at $328 per capita, does that mean that Tukwila residents pay more than three times as much in taxes as Federal Way residents? I think not! Until the council can make good on its goal to “establish Federal Way as an economic leader and job center in South King County by attracting a regional market for high quality office and retail business,” I fear we will continue to languish in the basement of the tax revenue per capita league table. The article also states that “The brunt of the expected revenue in the next two years will come from sales tax (27 percent of all revenues collected), property tax (25 percent of all revenues collected) and utility tax (19 percent of all revenues collected).” Again this is misleading in that the figures quoted pertain only to the General Fund. In the overall 2011 budget projections, utility tax is the city’s largest single revenue stream and is 17 percent higher than local sales taxes and 30 percent higher than property taxes. It is unfortunate that the data presented to date deals only with the General Fund and not the entire budget.

Derek Purton, Federal Way

Debate feedback I thought that Shawn Sullivan hit it out of the park Oct. 4 at the District 30 Legislature debates. Katrina Asay was light on some subjects, but she did not do a snow job on the electorate, she is honest. Tony Moore was stellar. He clearly got under Tracey Eide’s skin. Why can’t folks step aside and see if somebody else can do a better job? These are not career positions.

Linda Campbell, Federal Way

Mayor race: Priest earns my vote As the election for Federal Way mayor approaches, I just wanted to say a few words about why my family will be voting for Skip Priest. Since moving to the area five years ago, it has been our privilege to meet with Priest on a number of occasions while advocating for the rights of people with developmental disabilities. Our son has Down syndrome and because of that, we have been prompted to action to ensure that his rights, as well as the rights of others who have similar disabilities, are preserved. Skip Priest has always impressed us as someone who has been extremely approachable and someone who listens to the concerns of his constituents. He has never been “politics as usual” and has always encouraged us to talk to him with any concerns we have about our community and the people in it. Furthermore, he has always recognized us when we have approached him and remembered our previous meetings. This has not been our experience with other “politicians” who nod politely and then [ more LETTERS page 5 ]


October 9, 2010 [5]

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Sandy Clayton, Federal Way

Mayor race: Déjà vu all over again Have you been reading the long, ranting letters by Jerry Vaughn (Oct. 2)? I seem to remember him doing the same thing when he was a “Vote No” spokesperson for the elected mayor initiative. His tactic: Call the other guy “angry” and “against everything,” and then attack. Smear the opponent, and bully those who oppose the “No Changes” group. And furthermore, how dare those who

Dave McKenzie, Federal Way

Korean festival is a calling for FW On Sept. 16, the Korean community flocked to the Twin Lakes Golf and Country Club with winning on their minds. And win many of them did. Perhaps not with golf prowess, but with big hearts to serve their community. Many were generous to a fault, buying raffle tickets, mulligans and other add-ons. Notwithstanding the overcast sky, men and women, wearing outfits that seemed impervious to any weather, were not dissuaded. Upon arrival, they were warmly greeted by a cadre of volunteers, flashing welcoming smiles. They were sent packing on the green with Korean treats – karokay (a meat and vegetable turnover), cream sandwiches, and bottled water. There was much alacrity to their steps as they eagerly dashed to their carts. The golf tournament, put on by the Han Woo-Ri Festival’s board of directors, was convened to raise funds to help finance the 2011 festival. The budget to get this festival in motion costs tens of thousands of dollars. And with the downward spiral of the economy, the group became proactive in order to raise needed funds to

supplement what donors usually supplement. The annual event is considered to be the Pacific Northwest’s largest KoreanAmerican festival, featuring performances of all sorts, exhibits, activities, food, and lots more. Paying $100 a pop, which included golf carts, dinner, and service charges, golfers were treated to a cornucopia of goodies. A number of absentees, including Federal Way City Councilman Mike Park, were hole sponsors, according to the group’s president. Attendees who just came for dinner and auction paid $35 per person. Feasting from a fullcourse Italian meal, patrons polished off succulent Caesar salad, Fettuccine Alfredo, and sausage with much satisfaction. Added to the evening were the copious amounts of giveaways: Ivar’s $100 gift certificate, SyKart gift certificates, hotel stays, spa treatments, auto oil changes, Caribbean home-cooked dinner for six, just to name a few. The pièce de résistance auction item, however, was a football autographed by celebrated Seahawks linebacker Lofa Tatupu. Mayor Linda Kochmar Nandell Palmer

immediately forget why we were there. Priest has worked hard for Federal Way and its citizens and I have no doubt he will continue to do so in the capacity of mayor of our city. He has not been tainted by Olympia politics and he wants to make a difference. We have seen him out in the community on personal business and observed him come to the rescue of people carrying heavy boxes into the post office. As he helped them, he never used it as an opportunity to grandstand about his position or who he is… he was simply being a Good Samaritan. Our city needs someone like Skip Priest who has gleaned political experience but maintained his personal moral code of conduct. I hope you will join us in electing him mayor of Federal Way.

disagree with him point out the flaws in his candidate’s words and actions. I must assume that Mr. Vaughn, et al, have momentarily forgotten the purpose, process and value of democracy. Fortunately for the voters in Federal Way, Vaughn’s group lost its last battle. The citizens of Federal Way now get to vote for their mayor. (Please do not forget that fact.) But of course this prompts the “No Changes” group to step up their attacks. And they’re doing what they did last time: Twisting the facts, and hoping no one notices. The real facts go back 20 years, when Skip Priest was on the Federal Way City Council with Mary Gates and others. When Jim Ferrell unseated Gates in 2002, he became their mortal enemy. To say that the old guard is ganging up now on Mr. Ferrell is an understatement. And now Mr. Priest is back. First, he sided with the “Vote No” group, trying to keep you from being able to elect your mayor. Then he flip-flopped. (He’s been doing a lot of that lately.) He’s even talking now about his “vision” for Federal Way. How long has he had this vision? Since his “Vote No” position lost? He’s against term limits. Is that part of his vision? Don’t be fooled. And do remember that there is one person who has had the best interests of Federal Way and all of its people all along. Jim Ferrell.

WRITE A BLESSING

[ LETTERS from page 4]

brought greetings from City Hall, splicing her speech with a few words here and there in Korean to show comradeship. City Councilman Roger Freeman addressed the audience, extolling praises on the group for their contribution to Federal Way. Daniel Kim, honcho for Washington State’s Korean Chamber of Commerce, was also acknowledged by the emcee. Board members and the dynamic duo, husband and wife Len and Sandra Englund, emceed the program. Other officers on hand were Board President Scott Brown and Vice President Hee Jung Lee. Some of the Han Woo-Ri Festival’s highlights of yesteryear included B-Boy stars with a “battle” among crews from throughout the region; Korean pop music; traditional costume photo booth; calligraphy, and hands-on activities for children.

Learn more For more information about Han Woo-Festival 2011, please contact Patrick Doherty: Patrick. doherty@cityoffederalway.com.

Federal Way resident Nandell Palmer is president of Write A Blessing Media, a document production company. Contact: palmern777@aol.com.


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