Have You Voted Yet?
Have I voted? Election? What? Huh? Didn't we just have an election? Check out your junk mail pile. As a Spokane County voter you have a roughly 75% chance of finding a ballot due next Tuesday, February 12.
Do you feel a little blindsided? Here's a tool I found that might help with that: https://www.spokanecounty.org/list.aspx On that webpage, enter your email address or cell number (per the directions), then scroll down to "News Flash" and "Elections" (or anything else you might want to notified of from County government), click and, voila! you'll get notification of upcoming events. Welcome to the digital age.
According to the Spokesman only 3/4 of registered voters in Spokane County received ballots for this election. That's because all the issues on these ballots pertain to tax levies in various School and Fire Districts. "Orchard Prairie School District 123, Spokane County Fire Protection District 8, Spokane County Fire Protection District 13 (which is Newman Lake Fire and Rescue) and Spokane Valley Fire Department are replacing existing property tax levies."
Then there's the "CITY OF SPOKANE Proposition No. 1 Levy for Hiring of Police and Fire Personnel and Funding Crime Reduction Programs" Click this link for a good description of what this levy would pay for.
As a City of Spokane resident and property tax payer I'm voted for it and I encourage you to do the same. It seems to me that $60 more per year paid in property tax on a home valued at $200,000 is well worth what it buys.
So who would think otherwise? No surprises here. Stacey Cowles and David Condon both offer the opinion that the City Council did not do its homework, that the Council is just throwing money around [click the names for their opinions]. Stacey Cowles uses his bully pulpit as the sole member of the editorial board of his family owned newspaper [see Daniel Walters' commentary on that] to say the City of Spokane is paying its police and firefighters too much. He and Condon think the City Council needs to go back to the drawing board and cost cut. His source of information? Ah, yes, the Washington Policy Center, the local Koch-donor-group funded "think tank" that never met a tax of which it approved. Where were Cowles and Condon when the Spokane City Council was working to respond to citizens' concerns about property crime and emergency services?
We elect City Council members, a City Council President, and a Mayor to take a hard look at the details of making Spokane a safe and comfortable city in which to live. I like programs this levy will support and I don't need to listen to grousing and second guessing from one of the biggest property owning families in the area telling me my Council Members aren't doing their job...
Keep to the high ground,