Statement of George Webster, challenging an appointed Ronald Wastewater commissioner

Monday, September 23, 2013

George Webster
George Webster is running for Ronald Wastewater Commissioner, challenging the appointed incumbent

This is his statement of issues

This Election is about mainly two items! The “GOAL” of the betterment of the City of Shoreline, AND the ability to assure ratepayers of FRUGALITY. State Law RCW35.13A was passed in 1971 and allows a City to “assume” a Utility District that is 60% within the City. It also allows for a City Council and a District Commission to mutually agree to an Assumption without having a public vote.

In 2002, the “small” Ronald Wastewater District (RWD) General Manager Phil Montgomery, Commission President Arthur Wadekamper, and Commission Secretary Arnie Lind, signed the Interlocal Agreement Contract with Shoreline, thereby agreeing to the City Assumption. Both the Shoreline City Council and RWD Commissioners had legal counsel advice on the Assumption Contract. Now, the SAME two RWD Commissioners, Wadekamper and Lind, say they did not know what they were signing when they signed it, and want to nullify the contract agreement, but keep all of the “expanded number” of sewer connections. RWD has decided to expend funds to sue the City of Shoreline to try to VOID the Contract.

George Webster, a Professional Engineer, is running for RWD Commissioner to obtain what is best for both RWD ratepayers and Shoreline.


Anonymous,  September 23, 2013 at 11:20 PM  

Wadekamper is no longer going to be a Commissioner, you should keep up better with King County Elections, you might make more sense.

Anonymous,  September 24, 2013 at 9:38 AM  

Frugality, what is more frugal than a wastewater system with no debt and has hardly raised it's rates in the past ten years? Ronald Wastewater had no capital improvement projects to complete to support economic development. To me, that is what government should do - responsibly spend ratepayers money, keep rates low, and keep the infrastructure in good repair. It is a well run system.

And Mr. Webster thinks the city is frugal? Even though the city now collects $20 in car tab fees, it repaired less than 50% of the streets it did before it started collecting car tab fees last year. And the city doesn't have the reserves it had four years ago, it is below the recommended reserves that GFOA (that the city says it adheres to in its budgeting process) by almost 50% -- that is why they haven't been able to finish the last part of the Aurora Project -- they don't have the money.

Does Mr. Webster even know what spendthrifts the City of Shoreline are? And does he even realize that the City would raise all of the Ronald Wastewater system rates and increase utility taxes if they owned it?

Anonymous,  September 24, 2013 at 3:06 PM  

For fifty years Ronald Wastewater has been an excellent steward of public resources. It's easy to come up with 2+2=4 to tie the City's desire to acquire Ronald Wastewater with their lack of supporting Richmond Beach in their struggle against a massive Point Wells development, as Point Wells wastewater will have to be serviced by the holder of this system. It's nothing but a money grab by the City, who have NOT shown to be good stewards of public funds. If the City acquires Ronald Wastewater along with their takeover of the public water supply...hold onto your wallets.

Anonymous,  September 29, 2013 at 12:09 PM  

If the readers only look at the quoted RCW listed by MR. Weber they would naturally conclude that regardless of the merits of the City's ability to manage a utility that they have the legal right to acquire Ronald Wastewater without a vote.
A closer look at the law shows this is not the case. "Except as provided by RCW 35.13B.030" is key to understanding why there is debate on whether the City can take over the utility. RCW 35.13B.030 states: "A city choosing to impose a tax under RCW 35.13B.010 may not assume jurisdiction of all or part of a water-sewer district under RCW 35.13A.020, 35.13A030, or 35.13A.040 without voter approval of a ballot proposition authorizing the assumption." The RCW 35.13B.010 mentioned in this RCW refers to Interlocal agreements, which adds another layer of complexity to the issue.
Whether a vote is required will be be settled in court since the City and Ronald Wastewater have not been able to reach agreement despite RWD request to discuss the issue with the City since 2002.

Anonymous,  October 19, 2013 at 5:20 PM  

As a separate governing body, the Ronald Wastewater District does not have the same goals as the City of Shoreline. It's responsibility is to its RATEPAYERS and voters.

The statement above by Mr Webster is not correct in my opinion: "This Election is about mainly two items! The “GOAL” of the betterment of the City of Shoreline."

The "GOAL" should be to run the utility as efficiently as possible and provide excellent service to the ratepayers. This is what the District has done for the last 50 years.

"Don't change horses in the middle of a stream", is applicable here.

I will be voting for Rich Matthews!

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