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JOHN DICKINSON He’s a state house candidate in Seattle’s 37th District, and he asked the Stranger Election Control Board: “When you think of transparency, what word do you think of?” His answer: “Glass!”

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PUBLIC FINANCING DEFEATED Remember these names when they're up for reelection to the Seattle City Council next year: Tim Burgess, Tom Rasmussen, Bruce Harrell, and Jean Godden. On June 30, the four of them voted to block Council Member Mike O'Brien—for what he said is the first time in his four years on the council—from merely introducing a piece of legislation for consideration. O'Brien's bill would have reformed how we elect politicians, forcing them to get hundreds of small contributions, which would be matched sixfold by public funds, before they can seek fat campaign checks from the wealthy and powerful. Council President Burgess led the effort to block O'Brien's legislation, because, he said, he doesn't want voters to be overwhelmed with new measures to approve at the ballot this fall. Burgess admitted that O'Brien's bill represents "sound, progressive policy," but he refused to extend public comment time for election-reform advocates, like anti-homelessness activist Alison Eisinger. The move "could set a deeply damaging precedent in terms of the nature of debate in our city council," Eisinger said. O'Brien was able to get three supportive votes from Council Members Nick Licata, Kshama Sawant, and Sally Bagshaw, and said he was "deeply disappointed" by the four other council members "who voted against a public financing bill this year that they all allege to support in theory." ANSEL HERZ

LIGHT-RAIL STATION SHOOTING On June 30, after what authorities said was an altercation over an unpaid fare, a man was shot dead by a King County Sheriff's deputy at the Sound Transit light-rail station in Sodo. According to the Seattle Times, it all began around 4 p.m., when unarmed Sound Transit fare-enforcement officers confronted the man and then quickly called for backup. The man, according to Seattle police, was one of three men asked to leave a Sound Transit train over the fare issue. "One of the three men drew a handgun," the Seattle Police Department said in a statement, "and the deputy opened fire." ELI SANDERS

METRO BATTLE LINES Do you want taxes meant to prevent drastic cuts to Metro bus service to hit everyone, including low-income bus riders, equally hard? Or should they be progressive taxes that lean more heavily on those with deep pockets? When it comes to Metro funding, Council Members Nick Licata and Kshama Sawant have offered up a progressive proposal the city council can enact on its own: a modest employee head tax and an increase in commercial parking taxes that, along with a $60 vehicle license fee to be approved by voters, would buy back $45 million in bus service. But so far, neither the mayor nor other council members, who often complain about the city's lack of taxing authority, are on board. Instead, the mayor's plan is to raise sales taxes by 0.1 percent, plus use the vehicle license fee—both of which require approval from voters. A June 26 city council hearing gave a sense of how the Metro funding fight is shaking out. Standing behind the mayor's plan are some major players: the Seattle Chamber of Commerce, the University of Washington, Virginia Mason hospitals, and a host of liberal nonprofits. Meanwhile, boosters for Sawant and Licata's plan include smaller, scrappier groups like the Seattle Transit Riders Union and West Seattle Transportation Coalition. ANSEL HERZ

A NEW BRIDGE FOR SOUTH PARK After four years and $134 million, Seattle's South Park neighborhood has a new drawbridge connecting it to the rest of the city. The bridge opened to traffic on June 30 and is expected to carry 20,000 vehicles a day. At a preopening celebration on June 29, Seattle congressman Jim McDermott praised Senator Patty Murray for securing federal support for the bridge and, according to Seattlepi.com, told cheering residents: "This is what we call an 'earmark.'" ELI SANDERS

WAS IT WISE TO WEAR GOOGLE GLASS TO THE STRANGER's OFFICES? It is hard to surprise the Stranger Election Control Board, for we have seen many things. Until June 26, however, we had never seen someone run for office wearing Google Glass. Then we met Republican John Dickinson, a candidate for the state house from Seattle's 37th District (Rainier Valley, Mount Baker, Central District). He asked the SECB: "When you think of transparency, what word do you think of?" Dickinson's answer: "Glass!" He then promised us that his glasses—if they were worn by all state legislators—would expose the "backroom" Olympia, the "meet in the toilets and discuss" Olympia. Did the SECB swoon? Answers in our 2014 primary endorsement issue, out July 16! ELI SANDERS

A WARNING TO PLUTOCRATS "I have a message for my fellow filthy rich, for all of us who live in our gated bubble worlds," Seattle entrepreneur (and $15-minimum-wage backer) Nick Hanauer writes in the July/August issue of Politico magazine. "Wake up, people. It won't last. If we don't do something to fix the glaring inequities in this economy, the pitchforks are going to come for us. No society can sustain this kind of rising inequality." ELI SANDERS

MURRAY SAYS ALL THE RIGHT THINGS ON CRIME PREVENTION That was the take-home message from a lengthy, teleprompter-assisted speech by Mayor Ed Murray at City Hall on June 25. Murray says the Seattle Police Department should reflect the city's diversity (meaning, for example, it should hire more East Africans), that gun violence is a public-health epidemic to be rooted out, and that he's launching an ambitious Summer of Safety program. The mayor also paid tribute to 23-year-old Dwone Anderson-Young, a web developer gunned down in the Central District on June 1. Falana Young-Wyatt, Anderson-Young's mother, says Murray's promises "all sound good... I just want to see a year from now—all these things that he said. Did he do it?" In the meantime, her family passed out "Justice for Dwone" buttons at the Pride Parade. She wants the suspect in her son's murder—Ali Muhammed Brown, who is still at large—caught and thrown in jail. ANSEL HERZ recommended

 

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WHO REROUTES THE ONLY MASS TRANSIT TO LAKE UNION ON JULY 4TH?
King County Metro, That's Who!
who thought it was a good idea to shut down bus service to gasworks park on july 4th? i have lived in wallingford for 25 years. i only take the bus or walk. why on earth would you shut down the only mass transit to the park 10 hours before the fireworks? i understand that the streets south of north 40th are closed at 4pm. but before then why wouldn't you do everything possible to accommodate people not wanting to drive, don't drive' can't walk from 45th and wallingford or north 40th and stoneway? not only that, but you dumped them at the qfc or the 7-11! the durn good grocery at north 40th and wallingford looks forward to the riders that get off the routes 26 and 32 east and west. your rerouting really hurt a local business that works hard and spends weeks preparing for the extra business (inventory, portable toilets, added staff, etc). do you really care about the communities whn rescheduling? Please let me know. I am posting this complait to wallyhood.org with your swift response and cc it to all local print and tv media.

please let me know
thank you.
a concerned LONG-TIME Metro rider
Posted by isit just me? on July 6, 2014 at 8:13 PM · Report this

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