The Space Needle turned down a request from Seattle Out and Proud to fly a rainbow Pride flag during the upcoming Gay Pride Festival, on Sunday, June 25. The Needle, which is a private corporation, says the decision was based on business and scheduling, not homophobia. Mary Bacarella, director of marketing for the Needle, says the Needle displayed four flags in the last seven months. "We don't want the Space Needle to be a billboard for something that has nothing to do with the Needle." Out and Proud's lawyer, Dave Coffman, is giving the Needle folks the benefit of the doubt even though it took them this long—after displaying flags for the Seahawks and National Foster Care Month—to draw the line. SARAH MIRK
New polling, done by local pollster Stuart Elway, has some devastating, although not surprising, news for the Sonics: 78 percent of those polled would be a-okay if the Sonics left town. Just 15 percent wanted them to stay. The poll asked whether voters were "more inclined [to] let the Sonics leave Seattle" than to pay for a KeyArena renovation with "taxes."
However, Deputy Mayor Tim Ceis, who's working behind the scenes to hammer out a deal to keep the Sonics in town, was skeptical of the poll, telling the Seattle Post-Intelligencer that the question was framed to elicit a negative take on the Sonics by spinning it as a choice between raising taxes or letting the team leave. Given that raising taxes is exactly what the Sonics are demanding, it's not clear how Ceis would have worded the question differently. NANCY DREW
Mayor Greg Nickels's office is undergoing a major reorganization that puts Finance Director Dwight Dively and Office of Policy and Management (OPM) head Mary Jean Ryan directly under Deputy Mayor Tim Ceis as codirectors of the executive office. According to an e-mail from Deputy Mayor Tim Ceis, the mayor made the changes, which arrange the executive office by issue area into five so-called "pods," because the mayor wanted "to be more effective and efficient with our staff resources." It's still unclear, however, what the changes mean for the balance of power on the seventh floor. Sources say the mayor wanted to streamline the executive chain of command and get finance and OPM to make more decisions together. The shuffle can be done without council legislation, council member Jan Drago says, because it only realigns job descriptions within the mayor's office. The mayor's office did not return calls. ERICA C. BARNETT