To the editor:
Two weeks ago, on Oct. 17, I attended the forum on the streets overlay levy. We were told that night by Mr. Haug, committee chair, that the list of projects generated by the Public Works Department would be posted online by the City in response to the discussion that evening and published declarations that such a plan is available to the public. To date, this list remains unavailable to the public, it is not on the City website, and it has been seen by few outside of government.
In that same forum, despite the “Pro” literature that promises, “You Will Know What You Are Paying For,” it was revealed that there is, in fact, no list of prioritized projects, nor was any study done to determine if any potential project involved costly substructure repair or mere “overlay.” The so-called “list” was characterized by officials present as simply “examples,” with no role in determing which streets will — or will not — be addressed by the ordinance. Though Councilpersons Buckshnis and Peterson continued to refer to “the prioritized list,” as if they could spin this ruse into substance, they were repeatedly contradicted and corrected by Mr. Haug. There is no specific prioritized list of projects. The statements to the contrary can only be deliberate falsehoods, at this point.
The City is asking for a $1.5 million blank check for road work. There is no specific plan for these funds, and the continued false assertion that there is such a plan represents intentional misrepresentation by the Council and the City. So much for trustworthiness. Given the history of neglect of neighborhoods outside of The Bowl and Downtown by the Council, given the false promise that there is a prioritized, public plan, and given the effort to suppress the reality that Prop 2 is a blank check request, why should the citizenry trust the Council with such funding?
We in the “colonies,” those neighborhoods outside of central Edmonds that are taxed but receive proportionately less service and support, are fools to vote “Yes,” given this calculated ruse. More dollars to maintain neighborhoods not our own. Shame on the Council for perpetrating this fraud and denying access to public documents (those projected at the forum).
With so an egregious violation of trust, I have shifted from a “Yes” vote on Proposition 1 and 3 and a “No” vote on Proposition 2, to “No” on all three. This City Council, demonstrably lying to us about Proposition 2, cannot be trusted to govern or spend in an equitable and honest manner. Shame on the Edmonds City Council for continuing to lie to the voters.
Peter Hodges, Ed.D.