Letter to the Editor: Veterans and Human Services levy on the primary ballot

Sunday, June 19, 2011

To the Editor:

This morning in the Shoreline Area News, Evan Smith wrote that the primary in Shoreline was meaningless with only one judicial candidate. I would like to point out that although the candidate list on the primary ballot in Shoreline is short, there is one primary ballot measure of great significance. That is renewal of the Veterans and Human Services Levy. This levy, initially passed in 2005, is now one of only two sources of human services funding by King County. (The other is the Mental Illness and Drug Dependency Sales Tax). Contrast this with 2005, when the Veterans and Human Services Levy was thought of as a supplementary levy, and the County spent $20 million per year on human services out of the general fund.

The ballot measure sets the same initial rate as the original 2005 Veterans and Human Services Levy, 5 cents per $1000 of assessed value. The ballot measure specifies that levy growth will be tied to inflation, as measured by the Consumer Price Index, with a floor of 1 percent and a ceiling of 3 percent. Half the money is dedicated to veteran services and half to more general human services. There are separate oversight boards for the two halves of the levy. Reports of use of dollars and results of the levy are contained in the King County website.  I know that the oversight boards have been very conscientious about putting together a plan and carefully selecting projects that support that plan.

The human services levy was approved by the Regional Policy Committee of King County, endorsed by the Suburban Cities Association, and passed to the voters unanimously by the King County Council. I know this is a bad time for taxes. However, it is a good time to continue this levy, which supports veterans in need who have put their life on the line for this country. Additionally, the human services part of the levy supports measures to provide homes for homeless families and fund low income medical clinics. I strongly support continuing this levy and urge Shoreline voters to also support it.

[name withheld by Editor]


Anonymous,  June 19, 2011 at 2:44 PM  

why did you publish an anonymous letter after the big deal about anonymous comments?

anonymous - name withheld

DKH,  June 19, 2011 at 8:49 PM  

We said that we did not object to anonymous comments but that we preferred to have people pick a posting name because it got so confusing when there were multiple comments with people trying to respond to each other.

The "big deal" was made by readers who objected to our statement.

The author of the letter is known to me, and it was my choice, as Editor, not to publish the name.
Diane Hettrick (DKH) Editor

Evan Smith (name not withheld),  June 27, 2011 at 7:39 AM  

I disagree with the decision to allow an anonymous letter pointing out my error,
I immediately caught my error and corrected it under my own name.
The letter writer was correct to point out my error, but he should have the courage to use his name,

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