Submit your viewpoints on local happenings and current events.
EMAIL your Editorial to:
with "Citizen Editorial" in the subject line.
Citizen Editorial submissions become property of Olympic Broadcast & Media. Once posted, submissions shall remain on www.kmasnewsradio.com for a length of time determined solely by the Staff and Management of Olympic Broadcast & Media.
The views expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of the staff, management or owners of KMAS News Radio.
Check here for required information
Is there anyone out there who has not heard that our legislative gridlock in Olympia and the other Washington is the fault of the Liberal Democrats or the Radical Republicans? Does it matter? Yes, it does. We all pay the price for rigid, dogmatic, partisan politics. When was the last time we had a viable working budget early on in legisative and congressional sessions? With the brouhaha over the alleged "defection" of two Democrat Senators that supposedly created a majority in one house of the legislature, it would make one think that gridlock, at least in Olympia, is gone. Tain't so. Gridlock is alive and killing us. We still have no budget, yet the legislature just set aside $544 million for school construction. I don't deny that these funds are desparately needed by the schools, but why can't we have a timely budget that allows for we the people to review it before it is passed in a big rush so our devoted partisan legislators can get out of town before their per diem runs out? This is what the majority of people who still have the ability to think choose to be independent voters and do not subscribe to the sheep-like following of party doctrine. Wake up people! It's way past time to demand compromise and cooperation in the best interests of the people our legislators allegedly represent. Take a look around you. Our streets, highways, and bridges are falling apart! And not just in Seattle!There is enough fault on both sides to say "A pox on both their houses." Nothing will change until we demand our Legislators and Congressional Delegations be held accountable to the electorate, not some hide bound out of touch political party.
Richard Barnes, Feb. 12, 2013
Senators Tom & Sheldon
In re: your facetious opening line, no one is asking you to “be more partisan and forget about getting things done.” That’s the way they do things in D.C. We voters, do however, expect our elected officials to support the party that they “preferred” and were pleased to affiliate themselves with during their campaigns.
My personal opinion is that you betrayed the trust of the Democrats who elected you assuming that you would support party values. We recognize that there are times when Legislators vote in opposition to, or in favor of a particular bill, in spite of party affiliation, but no one ever expects their elected official to effectively “jump ship”. I further believe that your recognition of the “fact” that neither party “had 25 votes needed to govern” is pure balderdash. I believe what you truly recognized was an opportunity to circumvent the will of the people. It is disturbing to me that any legislator is able to do this with impunity. As a voter, I feel it is reasonable to assume that when we elect a senate and a house of representatives, the results won’t be changed by individuals who misrepresented their intentions during their campaigns.
Perhaps you believed there was some political advantage to your actions, and perhaps there is. However, you sacrificed your integrity and the trust of your constituents by deciding for the people of your districts and this state which party would hold the majority in the Senate. That, I would think, is arrogance. I considered asking you both to think about the consequences of your actions, but as seasoned legislators, I’m sure you considered those consequences very carefully.
Andrea Abruzzo, Belfair
Posted Feb 12, 2013
We’re proud Democrats who represent our districts, not a party
Here’s a question we have never heard from a constituent: “Why can’t you be more partisan and divisive and forget about getting things done?”
Believe it or not, the state Democratic Party is saying just that. In a resolution adopted at its recent central committee meeting in Olympia, the state party charged us with not reflecting “Democratic values” and being “disloyal” to the party.
Why? Because in December we openly recognized the fact that neither Democrats nor Republicans in the state Senate possessed the 25 votes needed to effectively govern. We understand that it is the role of political parties to put politics before all else, but as elected officials and leaders, we have a higher responsibility. We have to get things done.
As the two Democratic members of the Senate’s new Majority Coalition Caucus, we find this accusation of “disloyalty” to be small-minded, petty and factually untrue. We have never betrayed our core beliefs, and regardless of what some self-important potentates in Olympia and Seattle pronounce, we are still proud Democrats.
We have served our respective legislative districts for many years now. The people in our local communities know us and know that we are committed to representing them. We work for them, not a political party.
If you look at the choices made by voters in our districts, we are right in line on social issues, taxes, the need for education reform and a responsible budget. The messages our constituents have sent are very clear: Fund and improve our education system, balance the budget without new taxes, and get our families back to work. Appropriately, that has been the focus of our coalition since the 2013 legislative session started in mid-January: jobs, education and the budget.
Exactly what part of encouraging job creation, creating a quality, well-funded education system and producing a sustainable, balanced budget is a betrayal of Democratic values?
We owe it to the people who have repeatedly chosen to send us to the Capitol, and to the people of this state, to represent them and to work effectively with legislators of both parties to solve problems.
When political partisanship flies in the face of what the majority of our constituents want, we side with the people, not the party. Our districts voted overwhelmingly in support of a two-thirds majority requirement to raise taxes. So does siding with the 64 percent of Washingtonians who voted for Initiative 1185 in November upset some of the extreme elements of the party? Perhaps. Will that deter us from doing what we know is right for this state’s hard-working taxpayers? Of course not.
As far as our loyalty is concerned, we are loyal to the principles we have always held and to the constituents who have sent us to Olympia. We are not switching sides. We always have, and always will, be on the side of the people we represent, and side with them over any political party.
by Senators Rodney Tom and Tim Sheldon
Sen. Rodney Tom, D-Bellevue, is Senate Majority Leader and represents the 48th Legislative District. Sen. Tim Sheldon, D-Potlatch, is Senate President Pro Tempore and has been elected as a Democrat to the Legislature nine times.
Posted Feb. 8, 2013
Two of the three Port Commissioners are about to adopt a new Airport Update Plan which includes destroying the fair grounds. Are We, the People, going to stand for this to happen when the fair grounds land was given to the county by the Miller Family for purpose of fairs back in 1926?
Are we going to stand for this when the fair grounds buildings were built by the taxpayers and businesses with donated labor, money, and materials?
Are we going to stand for this when the fair grounds are a vital part of our economy and recreational opportunities, bringing tourist to our area whenever an event such as OysterFest, Car and Truck Shows, Entertainment, Garden and Floral Shows, Dog Shows, Horse Shows, Rock and Mineral Show, Rodeos, the County Fair and other events are held?
Are we going to stand for this when the fairgrounds have been home to 4-H Youth and FFA youth for over three generations?
It has been brought to my attention that the Ports Plan may be in default because the Washington State Open Meeting Act may have been violated.
John Dobson, Port Director, is recommending the buildings be destroyed based on a 2010 study by the Hexkix Group out of Seattle, paid for by the Port. Are we going to stand for this when the Helix Group from Seattle is the same group that was paid to draw up plans for new buildings previous to 2010. Is this a conflict of interest, or what? Mason County has Qualified individuals who could determine the structural conditions of these buildings.
Annette S. McGee,
Posted Feb. 5, 2013
Kathy Haigh's Kats over Kids Bill: HB-1229
Today, Republicans and Democrats sparred over rules changes in Olympia. Two very key rules were brought forth by House Republicans.
1. Pass a rule to require a 2/3rds majority to raise your taxes. This has been voted in favor of by the people of Washington and the 35th District now five different time. This last time the people of the 35th District passed it overwhelmingly with a rock solid 70% or more of the vote.
2. Pass a rule requiring the Legislature to follow the Supreme Court ruling and fund education properly, Fund Education First.
On both votes Kathy Haigh voted NO, blatantly disregarding the overwhelming voice of her constituents. On both votes our freshman Representative, Drew MacEwen voted in favor of both these rules. A move that shows that he is clearly, unlike Kathy, in touch with his district. There are many issues facing the State that require immediate attention and by looking at Kathy Haighs bill sponsorship list she addresses none of them and shows that she is basically there just to collect a pay check and go home. If she is not harrassing citizens with morass big government rhetoric in the house agriculture committee, she is ignoring constituent calls and meetings, or creating self interested bills that harm the welfare of the state and its citizens more than it helps all while ignoring the real issues.
Let me get this straight. Kathy Haigh says NO to funding education and NO to making it harder on politicians to raise taxes, but YES to increasing the size of the Dept. of Health so that we can pay Veteranarians like herself to spay and neuter cats? Im serious, this is how out of touch she really is. She could tackle any issue but decides that cats in low income families are more important than education of kids in low income families. But dont forget, shes feeding herself the bacon; recieving public funding for her private industry.
In "The Fascist Manifesto", Benito Moussolini defined fascism as the state and private industries or corporation having extremely close ties.
As House Republicans and Democrats try to work out a way to fully fund education, the fiscal note in Kathy's bill calls for almost $10,500,000 million for just a span of 2013 to 2015 for cats. Thats alot of funding we could have used for our schools, or more lunches for kids. With the threat of a new capitol gains tax from the State Senate and a plethora of taxes being mulled around in talks at the State House, and a GET program that is completely and utterly insolvent to the tune of what could be over a billion dollars if we were to end it right now, it would be mind melding to assume that it would be ok to create yet ANOTHER NEW program that will cost us big. We need to elect more fiscally aware politicians that arent hell bent on continuing down the path to the largest debt binge in U.S. history and burdening the future generation with extreme austerity. No new taxes, no new spending, no new programs, until you can properly fund education, balance the budget with out shortfalls, and go one term without a special session!
Shame on you Kathy.
- Travis Couture (Belfair)
Posted Feb 4, 2013