Letter to the editor: Don’t be swayed by scare tactics in Port of Edmonds race

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Editor:

In the recent excellent and well-attended candidate forum held by Edmonds Indivisible and the Edmonds Neighborhood Action Coalition, City Councilmember Adrienne Fraley-Monillas submitted a statement to be read at the forum, as she was unable to attend. In her statement, Councilmember Fraley-Monillas suggested that there were shadowy unidentified individuals who would “pave over the marsh” if they were not stopped. Apparently, she believes that fake news and scare tactics influence some people in Edmonds.

Councilmember Fraley-Monillas never identifies who these individuals are or how they would proceed to eliminate the marsh, given our highly protective environmental laws and local passion for the Marsh. No, she just puts that statement out there to scare people into voting for whom she wants to win an election. In this case, it is most likely the Port races she is trying to influence.

Councilmember Fraley-Monillas, please stop insulting our intelligence. Nobody wants to or could pave over the marsh. So why make this claim? It’s not hard to figure out. There are three excellent, experienced incumbents running for Port Commission this November. Their collective commitment to environmental and fiscal stewardship of the Port has been exemplary. That’s a fact. They have the track record to prove it.

Don’t be swayed by baseless scare tactics. Edmonds and the Port deserve better.

Maggie Fimia
Edmonds and Port voter

6 COMMENTS

  1. She does it because fear tactics work. Tell them a whopper, never back up with facts, and let it lay.
    It happens all the time with a tax increase. (oh the children, oh the seniors, etc etc) Frankly it really should make all intelligent people to read up on ANY ISSUE.

  2. The truth is that most of the marsh has already been paved over. Only about a quarter of it is left. Port stewardship of the marsh continues to leave much to be desired. The remainder of the marsh is threatened by untreated stormwater flowing directly into it, lack of flow between the marsh and Puget Sound, and herbicides sprayed in the area.

    • I understand that some of the marsh has been paved over, but when did that happen? I’ve lived here since 1979 and none occurred since then, so not something that the current Port commissioners up for re-election – Bruce Faires, Fred Gouge and Steve Johnston – can be held accountable for.

  3. There seems to be great confusion regarding the health of the Edmonds Marsh and the role the Port of Edmonds has played or should play in improving conditions in the Marsh. It’s time to set the record straight.
    The Port takes it’s environmental stewardship seriously. Here are just a few examples:
    • The Port spent more than $2 million cleaning up historic industrial contamination at the Harbor Square site and replaced aged stormwater conveyance systems in the process.
    • The Port implemented a state-of-the art boat pressure wash and boatyard treatment systems that produces some of the cleanest treated discharge to the Sound in the region.
    • The Port’s water treatment system designs have been adopted by other Ports because of their effectiveness in reducing environmental impact to the Sound.
    • The green certified marina has been named one of the best marina in Puget Sound and nationally in publications, and meets or exceeds all environmental regulatory requirements at all of its facilities. Indeed, it sets an environmental standard other public ports envy.
    • The Port has also fully cooperated with and provided access to volunteer organizations that periodically remove invasive species and plant native vegetation in the Marsh buffers areas.

    What is the real threat to the health of the Marsh? Fact vs. Fiction
    Ms. Fields is correct, according to the Washington State Department of Ecology it’s the contaminated runoff from Edmonds Way, a State Road, not the size of the setbacks.

    Who actually owns the Marsh?
    The City, not the Port, owns the great majority of the Marsh and its shoreline. The City is also responsible for the stormwater that may impact the Marsh.

    How did the Marsh get contaminated in the first place?
    It is important to note that the Port did not create the filled regions of the Marsh the contamination by toxic substances. The Port purchased the land from Chevron Oil and implemented the clean up.
    In fact, the Marsh is in the best environmental condition it has been in over 50 years, due to reduced contamination from vehicular operations and better stormwater policies and practices.

    In my view, the Port has always strived to do the right thing environmentally. We should all be proud of the environmental leadership shown by our Port. Let’s focus on what’s the problem we’re trying to solve, what are the evidence based solutions to solving the problems, and the costs and benefits of those solutions? Then, let’s encourage the city council to work with the state and the port to improve the health of the Marsh even more.

  4. Council Member Fraley Monillas, Posted on her face book page a month or so ago that she voted to save the marsh from being paved over. I follow the council and the issues and never heard or read anything about paving over the marsh. When I questioned her about it she did not responded and unfriended me. There are some politicians who will say anything to get there friends elected. I would hope this election rises above these kind of remarks

  5. Actually, the marsh is about half the size it originally was before the northern portion was filled since the 1950s by parties other than the Port, which acquired what is now the Harbor Square site in 1978. The Port contributes a very small portion of the stormwater that enters the marsh. The great majority of the stormwater entering the marsh is from the 700-plus acres of uplands drained by Shellabarger and Willow Creek. Also, the City of Edmonds, which owns the great majority of the marsh, is responsible for stormwater management within the City limits, not the Port. Perhaps it is time for the City to step up and take ownership of the stormwater issue at the marsh. For its part, the Port has spent substantial amounts of money to install new, environmentally friendly roofs at Harbor Square, clean up industrial contamination adjacent to the marsh that already existed when the Port acquired the land, replace aging stormwater conveyance systems with new systems, provide and maintain filters at all of Harbor Square’s storm drains, and routinely clean out accumulated sediment in the Port’s storm drain systems. Basically, the Port meets or exceeds all stormwater best management practices at the Harbor Square site. No, the Port has been a good steward of the environment, marsh, and the Puget Sound shoreline. To say otherwise is, well, just plain wrong.

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