I’m Still Doing a Heckuva Job
• Originally designed to terminate at East John Street, the First Hill Streetcar may run a half mile farther north on Broadway Avenue East, to East Roy Street, thanks to the federal government kicking in $1.75 million for planning. "Stopping the streetcar line halfway through the Broadway business district didn't make sense," Mayor Mike McGinn said at a sidewalk press conference on October 30. The extension could be finished by 2015.
• In related streetcar news: Sources tell us that a cycle track that's being built along Broadway will likely be open next year, a full year before the streetcar opens. Bikes first!
• Two hairy women showed up at a "Women for Rob McKenna" rally last week under the Space Needle, where Republicans called their Democratic opponent, Jay Inslee, "sinister." The hairy women cheered for the anti-gay GOP gubernatorial candidate's agenda to slash funding for social services.
• How many stamps does it take to mail in your general-election ballot in King County? One. It takes one stamp, people. That is the official, absolutely correct answer. You can stop asking now and vote!
• Following a childish clash between the mayor and city council over selecting a monitor to oversee Seattle Police Department reforms, a US District Court confirmed the council's choice, Merrick Bobb, on Tuesday.
• After public protest, city council members have abandoned their plan to eliminate a pay-by-cell-phone parking program, which will allow drivers to update parking meters by phone. Yes! Complaining works!
• Seattle Times reporters had to fact-check their own publisher on October 26, using a very special "Truth Needle" to point out that some of the ads supporting Republican Rob McKenna are only "half true." (We prefer the term "half false.") Among other things, the Seattle Times reporters found that a McKenna ad paid for by the Seattle Times Company made "way off" claims about how many students drop out of Washington State K–12 schools.
• You know that $1.7 billion of additional education spending Rob McKenna promised in his first budget? Turns out there's nothing additional about it. The entire $1.7 billion comes by raising state school levy dollars while reducing local school levy dollars. Essentially the state would raise more, but local districts would raise an equal amount less. In other words, schools wouldn't get a penny more.
• The final Elway Research poll before the election hit the streets last week, and it shows that approving Referendum 74, thereby legalizing gay marriage, has the support of only 49 percent of likely voters. Six percent of voters are undecided, and 45 percent of voters are opposed. The group of undecided voters is shrinking, with those folks breaking toward "reject" votes. Everyone seems to think that approving R-74 is in the bag. It's not.