Issue statements from Shoreline Council candidates on the primary ballot

Friday, June 26, 2015

By Evan Smith

Shoreline City Council incumbent Jesse Salomon faces challengers Michael Bachety and Lorn Richey on the Aug. 4 primary-election ballot.

The primary will narrow the field to two for the Nov. 3 general election.

Two other Shoreline Council positions will be on the November ballot, but neither will appear on the primary ballot because they have only one or two candidates.

Bachety, Richey and Salomon recently sent statements about what they think are the most important issues in this year’s Shoreline election.

Here are their statements in the order they will appear on the August primary ballot and in the voters’ pamphlet: 

Lorn Richey
Lorn Richey

Planning to radically rezone Shoreline is the biggest issue. It will affect every decision for the next 20 years.

The rezones going on now are more suited for rundown, industrial areas, or blighted neighborhoods dominated by vacant lots and empty buildings. Shoreline neighborhoods in question are far from blighted. They are functioning, inviting, safe communities, populated by seniors and struggling middle-class families, who know and rely on each other. I am proud to be a part of them.

The fact is the extreme rezoning is not necessary for the success of Light Rail or mass transit. It is not necessary for the Growth Management Act. The Echo Lake zoning prior to the rezone allowed for a doubling of the housing in 20 years – without changing the essential character of the neighborhoods and without the extreme increased need for infrastructure. We can support mass transit and avoid many of the downsides of land speculation, community displacement, fast track loss of tree canopy and bird habitat, by slowing down and focusing on existing community.

Jesse Salomon
Jesse Salomon

Economic Development is crucial to Shoreline. For obvious reasons we need more jobs and vibrant businesses. In addition, because of Tim Eyman's initiative capping property taxes below inflation, the City's budget will shrink every year and services will be cut unless something is done. So a growing economy is critical for jobs and critical to the revenue we need to fund services like police and parks. 

As your Councilmember, in order to address this, I helped establish a community renewal area (CRA) at Aurora Square, located off Aurora Ave and 155th. Right now it has huge underused parking lots and low earning stores (except for Central Market). With the CRA the City can work with all the business owners to voluntarily redesign the area with housing and amenities like a public square. It is my hope that this attracts restaurants and independent shops. I am proud to say that visits to the Shoreline Farmer’s Market tripled after it moved to Aurora Square this summer! You can find more on the CRA here

Michael Bachety
Michael Bachety

Trust and confidence with the city council has been lost. What has recently brought many concerned residents together is the council’s urbanization plan. This is my main concern.

Before some of the larger rezoning issues, there was the back lot of the Ronald Methodist church. A 5-story apartment building, on what is in essence a single-family plot, will soon dwarf my neighborhood and forever change our quiet atmosphere. The city council made exemptions for their benefit, at neighbor’s expense, and the last group of old evergreens in that neighborhood will soon be lost.

Many larger projects have been proposed since then. This has raised concerns with councilmembers’ motives and has thus depleted trust. If elected, I will be a thorn in the side of this current council and I vow to work for the concerns of Shoreline residents here today, making sure we grow appropriately to what our infrastructure can tolerate.

I hope my conviction to be a sheepdog, of a sort, gains your confidence, and vote, to put Shoreline residents’ concerns first and foremost.


Anonymous,  June 26, 2015 at 9:22 PM  

Way to go Lorn Richey and Michael Bachety!

Sounds like Salomon is fear-mongering us into allowing our property taxes to not be capped at 1%. Because... it's not keeping up with inflation? Well, you know what else isn't keeping up with inflation? Wages and salaries! If anyone believes the hype about the unemployment rate getting better, think again! Once job seekers run out of unemployment benefits, their numbers are no longer counted by Employment Security Dept. or the Dept. of Labor. The statistics are not factual.

Anonymous,  June 26, 2015 at 9:23 PM  

If Chris Roberts wins the KC Elections Director position, what's the process/procedure for who will take his place?

Voter June 26, 2015 at 11:00 PM  

The hearsay is that the City Councilmembers will select and vote on who will replace Roberts on the Council, and that the Shoreline voters will have no participation.

If this is true, then Roberts has done a terrible disservice to the our community. He placed his own personal ambition above his responsibility and service to the community as a current Councilmember. When he decided to jump-ship, he needed to resign from the City Council so in the upcoming Election the Shoreline public would of elected his replacement

As it is the 3-Amigos and a swing vote will choose, and the City of Shoreline and we, the residents, will be all the worse for it.

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