Letter to the Editor: Glad for the information at the town hall meeting on SPU Water in Shoreline

Thursday, October 25, 2012

To the Editor:

We have a lot of questions about Shoreline Proposition 1 to buy the water portion of Seattle Public Utilities.  We have wondered about the costs needed to build a brand new infrastructure, hire a whole new staff to operate the system, create a maintenance program, build a reservoir and/or back-up system, buy sources of water, cover emergencies, lay pipes, buy the system from SPU, and on and on.  It has seemed to us that it’s too good to be true that costs for water will be less or no higher than they are now, should voters give the City of Shoreline permission to buy SPU.  Because of our concerns, we were very glad that there was a Town Hall meeting to look at this issue.  It was a great meeting. There were representatives from Seattle Public Utilities, Shoreline Water District, and Ronald Wastewater District.  It was government at its best. With the great exchange of information that occurred, it felt much like a partnership between those of us wondering about Proposition 1 and the government entities that serve us.

Unfortunately there was no one from the Shoreline City Council or any Shoreline City staff members at the Town Hall meeting.  One has to wonder why the City decided not to participate if the other three organizations were all able to send representatives.  It would have been nice to have more information to allay the concerns of those of us who continue to think the City plan has not answered key questions and isn’t solid. 

At any rate, we learned a lot on Monday night from the entities that did participate and were very glad for the opportunity to do so. 

Tim and Leslee Shanahan


Anonymous,  October 25, 2012 at 6:58 AM  

The meeting was scheduled to be held during City Council's regular meeting time right in the middle of their budget process. There is no way they could have attended and I believe the meeting organizers were well aware of that. Why hold a Proposition 1 meeting when the main party couldn't possibly come?

Anonymous,  October 26, 2012 at 6:21 AM  

Pretty sure the City of Shoreline has ample staff to address two meetings in one night. If they didn't, how could they possibly manage multiple departments, much less add on a new water utility department? I'm guessing it was more about avoiding questions that might arise from spending taxpayer money on a 4-page brochure filled with carefully selected facts in an effort to convince voters to give them authority to become a utility provider--which will happen regardless of whether the City of Seattle decides to sell, and regardless of what price is negotiated 8 years from now in an uncertain economy.

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