Reminder: Mayoral debate July 17, ACE forum July 22

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Kristiana Johnson
Mike Nelson

With four candidates running for Edmonds mayor in the August primary election, two events have been announced in July to help voters learn where the candidates stand on key issues.

The first event, on Wednesday, July 17, is a debate being sponsored by My Edmonds News at the Edmonds Center for the Arts, 410 4th Ave. N. It will start at 7 p.m. and will be moderated by Publisher Teresa Wippel.

The second event, on Monday, July 22, is a forum being hosted by the Alliance of Citizens for Edmonds (ACE), from 6:30-9 p.m. in the Edmonds Council Chambers, Public Safety Complex, 250 5th Ave. N.

Brad Shipley
Neil Tibbott

The following candidates will appear on the primary ballot: Edmonds City Councilmembers Kristiana Johnson, Mike Nelson and Neil Tibbott, and City of Edmonds Planner Brad Shipley.

Primary election ballots are scheduled to be mailed to voters Thursday, July 18. The deadline for voting is Tuesday, Aug. 6. The top two vote-getters in the primary will move on to the Nov. 5 general election.

 

 

 

17 Replies to “Reminder: Mayoral debate July 17, ACE forum July 22”

  1. Thanks for this info. We need to get some firm answers about how much of our money they want to spend, and what they want to spend it on.

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  2. I think choosing the right Mayor (and Council) this time around is very crucial to the future of livability in our city. There has just been too much “selling” of Edmonds to the highest bidder and too much emphasis on as much development of high end housing and business as possible to enhance the tax base (sales and property). This is frequently bragged about by some current office holders. In my opinion we need some folks who are willing to say “wait a minute, let’s take another look at some of the plans already in the works and see if we can massage them a little here and there to make more sense financially and aesthetically.” There has to be a better balance to what has been the norm of basically “selling” Edmonds the past 20 years or so. We allow the building of a large apartment building with no on site parking for example, in downtown, where parking is already a major problem. If things continue as they are, in another 20 years the cottages will all be gone from the Bowl area which will simply be a bastion of exclusivity for the relatively wealthy. We are heading full speed to becoming essentially two Edmonds, “The Bowl” and the “Not the Bowl.” For example, there is currently a one bedroom less than 900 sq. foot home for sale near downtown at $500,000 in round numbers. It sits on a fairly large no view lot. That home will soon be gone and something of at least 4000 sq. feet will replace it. There are no starter type homes left in “The Bowl” and not many left in “Not the Bowl.” The question will soon be are we for everyone or just for the extremely wealthy? Hope we get the right managers in place.

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  3. I’m not sure what you have against wealthy people. The ones I’ve met have been generally very nice folks, and have contributed to the community, They pay their taxes each year, funding local government, including plenty of social services. They don’t commit generally a lot of street crimes. They support the local businesses, restaurants, and the Arts. They generally keep their homes in good condition. The idea that local politicians are going to create all these starter homes in the “Bowl area” is economic nonsense.

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  4. Mr. Dale, I would point out that no where in my comment did I state anything against wealthy people. In fact, I pretty much agree with you about wealthy people in general. I also know there are many not so wealthy people living in the city of Edmonds, even in the Bowl, who love and take great care of their properties and would like and deserve a little more consideration and representation from their elected officials. (For example, a friend of mine who lives near the no parking apartment complex I referenced. He is adversely impacted by city policy that favors wealth and rampant development). They also would like to not be property taxed out of their homes because some “fat cat” had the money to tear down two cottages so they could build another McMansion, which drives up the taxes for everyone else around their often out of proportion structure. This is called “gentrification” in case you didn’t know. It’s greater wealth driving out lesser wealth. The big eating the little. However you want to put it. Public policy can and, in my opinion should, encourage the building and retention of all types of housing and encourage the building of some smaller homes such as ADUs where properties have room for this. Generally Edmond’s building codes discourage this approach to “protect property values” of some over that of other’s. I notice people like yourself like to misconstrue the comments of people they disagree with. Happily, I can make my points while not making the implication that you have something against people of lesser means although, based on some of your comments, it sounds like you might. Suggest you work on this aspect of your public discourse in the future. It would give you more credibility.

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    1. CW, could you help us all understand how your friend was adversely impacted? It would help us all understand what you may know that we do not.

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    2. CW, when El Porto closed and the new Mexican Restaurant was in the offing for replacement you mentioned the term “gentrification”. It was not clear what you were asserting at that time but do what would be your assessment of the new restaurant replacing El Porto? Help us understand if you feel “gentrification” occurred.

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  5. ADU’s actually make properties more expensive as now you have a income stream which is factored into the net price of the property. People are taxed out of their properties because the government raised the taxes. Good luck on the local government fighting the laws of supply and demand. Let’s see how that works out. I am glad I was mistaken, to hear that you do love rich people.

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  6. Wow, guess I struck a couple nerves here. In response to Mr. Haug, my friend was impacted because his home and some business property are located near the new building. People living in the new building will have to park their one or more vehicles, somewhere and that somewhere will be on the street around and in front of my friend’s property. He testified before the Council about this. Why would the city allow an apartment/condo complex to be built without at least one on site parking place for each unit? Was this a “mistake” on the part of the planning department, incompetence or undue influence of a developer?

    As to the El Puerto question I plead impending old man senility. I don’t recall those comments specifically. As I remember someone was saying how the other ethnic restaurant was better anyway and inferring that the business failed rather than they just wanted to retire or some such nonsense. I don’t see how this has anything to do with “gentrification” at this point. The concept of gentrification is pretty simple, however. It is the displacement of long term residents with lesser wealth by people of greater wealth. It isn’t a value judgement, it just is a phenomenon.

    As to Mr. Dales latest comment, he misses my point I think. ADU’s probably do make properties more valuable, but they also might make it more possible for current owners to remain in place by creating that income stream he talks about. They also would provide some lower cost alternatives for some lesser well healed folks to partake of the Edmonds Kind of living experience. The Edmond’s codes currently discourage ADU’s because they might adversely affect other resident’s property values.There are lots of reasons property taxes go up and one of them is that they are the fall back position for getting government funds, when other sources are exempted for whatever reasons. As per Mr. Dale’s comment about me loving rich people, I’ll forgive him that feeble attempt at sarcasm, as I’m pretty good at sarcasm myself.

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    1. No nerve struck here, just trying to get all the facts correctly understood. It is always good to learn and who knows maybe we can see what issues are important and which ones are just part of our life in Edmonds. I have some information that may help us all with hour question from above: “Was this a “mistake” on the part of the planning department, incompetence or undue influence of a developer?” I have heard explanations of the origin of the ordinance. What we were seeing for development of apartments in those days was the purchase of smaller buildings, consolidating them to single properties and building bigger footprint buildings. Some folks were concerned with this trend and as a way for some smaller lot to be developed and stay small in nature was to grant the exception for parking an small lots. In this case the city gets 9 living units DT. The cost of each unit is cheaper than if the land cost were spread over only 6 units. So my take is it was not a mistake, incompetence or undue influence of a developer. it was a reaction to what was happening at the time. Since this ordinance was established it has been used only once. If a developer had tried to use undue influence why did that developer not build something using the new ordinance. In this case build years after the ordinance was first developed it was not a “developer” building the building it was a private land owner building 9 new units instead of 6.
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      I have done volunteer work for the city on parking issues and when this building was under construction several drives through the area show many available parking places on the street day and night. The same can be said after the building was completed and occupied. The city parking zones for residence and employee parking are tightly controlled. The city has issued 800+ residential parking passes, and 700+ employee parking passes. This zone has the least number of residential passes. While employees are allow in some areas around this area those zones can be change by council at any time. At this point this zone has more stalls available day and night than the other zones. Hope that information helps provide a greater understand of the issues and their impact.

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  7. All I know is my friend felt his property was impacted by the ability of someone to build nine units without on site parking and he made his views known. As far as the owner not being a developer, I would say that is a bit definitional. When you build something on a property, my definition would be that you are developing it, especially if it is income producing. This property is located near the ECA and I doubt that one or two drives thru the area, when there is no event going on, is a complete analysis of the general parking situation in the area as it impacts residents over all times of the day. I could definitely be wrong about that, but it would be interesting for some of the people actually living in that area to insert their views here.

    I’ll happily leave all the nuts and bolts minutia of how these decisions are made up to you to interpret and present. You are very good at that and I am not. The general point I’m trying to make, is that for many years now city decisions on what can and can’t be built here have slanted toward favoring the building of much larger ever more expensive homes and large high priced multiple resident facilities. At the same time we are promoting this approach to growth, we are bemoaning the fact that the tree cover is going away and we can’t always find a place to park three feet from where we are headed. When you fill up every square foot of your available space with a giant structure you can say goodby to things like trees, parking and simpler folk living in normal size homes. The coolest home in my neighborhood is a tiny little very well kept cottage with a nice yard full of great plants. It also contains two of the nicest people in town who have a small business in town. In my opinion we should be encouraging all types of dwellings and all types of people to live here, not just the financially well blessed. This used to be such a town. It pretty much isn’t anymore. I’m in favor of electing some folks to City government with less grandiose views of the city and themselves, quite frankly.

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  8. A couple more points about your comments Darrol, and then I’ll quit beating this horse to death. I just drove around that area (Sunday and Art Festival going on). A couple things you left out of your remarks about parking above is that the parking in that area is all pretty much posted as 3hr.s only from Midnight to 6:00PM except Sundays and Holidays. (I’m sure residents get exempted from that ordinance with the proper applications). So, what has been created there is rotational parking apparently for the downtown area which is also near by. Today there were lots of cars parked in the area around 2:00 PM. I suspect the residents are somewhat impacted by this daily rotational parking, especially if events are going on downtown or at the ECA during the week.

    My second observation is that in allowing 9 apartment units vs. 6, the City gave this owner/developer quite a financial windfall. If you estimate the rent for each unit at $2000/mo., that’s $72,000/yr. additional revenue over the 6 unit building with parking. Even at $1500/mo., that’s a chunk of change. I hope that owner/developer is taking you planning workers and volunteers out to lunch every once in awhile to show his appreciation.

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  9. Residents can buy for $25 per year a permit that attaches to the window. They can also buy a removal permit for their guests for $10 per year. These permits are good for a full 12 months from purchase. With that permit they will not be ticketed in 3 hour zones. They do have to be away that they cannot park for more than 72 hours in a 3 hour zone even with a permit. The compete for space like everyone else but exempt from 3 hr limit. We have over 800 such permits issues in 3 separate zones. In many of these areas we also have areas that allow employee parking. Those permits are good for the calendar year, can transfer to other cars, and cost $50 if purchased Jan-June and $25 if purchased after June. We issue about 700-750 employee permits per year.

    The typical estimate for a parking stall in a structure is $30-40,000. If underground like those in the new Westgate development they are much more. The WG developer indicated the 30+ underground stalls cost $49.000.

    While our ordinance for on site parking does not say so, one idea would be to charge a developer a one time fee if they did not provide on site parking. For example if the developer. If code dictated 5 on site stalls and the estimate for each is $30k then we could charge the developer $20k for each stall not provided. In this example foregoing 5 stalls would cost $100k. A type of mitigation fee just like we do for parks, water and sewer. That money could go exclusively to parking needs in town.
    The city will be doing a DT parking study this year which give us all a bit more information about how we manage the scares recourse of a parking stall. Public input will be a part of the study so CW tell your friend his input will be welcome.

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  10. Thanks, Darrol, I’ll let him know and maybe join him. Your statements about having to pay for permits and obey certain rules just to park in front of your own house supports my hypothesis that City policy and over development have created a hassle for people living in that area, especially long term residents.

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    1. Last night at 8:20 I drove around the area near the 9 unit building. I check only north and west of the building. I stopped counting the empty spaces at 35. So at least in this area “over development” has not “created a hassle for people living in that area” If something is being missed then the public input portion of the parking study will be a good place to mention any issues.

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  11. Parking in my neighborhood is generally no problem either, except during the Arts Festival, The Taste, and the Fireworks and some neighborhood private events. So far I don’t have to pay anything for a permit to park in front of my own joint, but I’d solve that problem by parking on my ample lawn which hasn’t been covered up by a giant house I don’t need or ever want. That situation will probably change when the next owner takes over. I purposely post signs of “welcome to park” in front of my house for visitors to the above events because I think this is good P.R. for the town. Many residents put up cones and no parking signs on what is in truth public street parking supposedly not controlled by the home owner. I suspect you will get an earful at the parking study meetings you referenced, from people in the area we are talking about.

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  12. Love this quote:

    America has the best politicians money can buy.
    Will Rogers

    and…

    You can’t fool all of the people all of the time. But it isn’t necessary.
    Will Rogers

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