The city council is saying it no longer wants to protect Seattle's working-class job corridor, and instead, is poised to bow down to the virtual economy ["Strong-Arming the City," Feb 24]. Last Friday, City Council Member Richard Conlin's neighborhoods committee (which includes supposed pinkos Judy Nicastro and Nick Licata) agreed to nix a significant element of South Seattle's Duwamish manufacturing and industrial plan: In order to keep property values in check and to reserve space for heavy industry, locals on the planning committee had proposed to cut back on office space allowed in the Duwamish area. No such luck. "The committee agreed on almost everything," says Conlin of his carefree colleagues. The full council will vote on the plan in April. ALLIE HOLLY-GOTTLIEB
Sidran's Sorry-Ass Track Record
City Attorney Mark Sidran is apparently not very vigilant about cracking down on vindictive landlords. According to Sidran's office, they only bothered to prosecute less than 20 percent of the landlord retaliation cases filed with the city from 1995 to 1999. And they only won about 38 percent of that sliver. Assistant City Attorney Supervisor Mike Finkle discovered his department's lame track record while responding to a request for the info from Renters' Liberation Commando Judy Nicastro ["Toothless in Seattle," Feb 17]. ALLIE HOLLY-GOTTLIEB
Birds Do It, Mules Do It...
The city council's circus animal rights squad -- Heidi Wills, Judy Nicastro, Nick Licata, and Richard Conlin -- may have lost their battle to save exploited elephants, but their valiant fight won them notoriety with the animal liberation movement. Activists currently advocating anti-bestiality legislation in Missouri (the "Show Me" state) are seeking the stamp of approval from Seattle's city council. "I am writing to ask you to please, please SUPPORT HB-1658 to make bestiality (sexual abuse of animals) a crime in Missouri. Please do it for the animals," urges Christine Johnes in a February 22 e-mail to Seattle's city council. Missouri's state animal is the mule. NANCY DREW
Thanks to a lawsuit settlement over 1997's dubious Nordstrom public-private garage deal, the city is now required to hold public hearings on any city investment over $5 million. To the chagrin of some city council members who wanted to sign off on the deal without a public hearing, a public meeting is taking place on March 30 to evaluate a $21 million public-private partnership proposal for the funding of a new Seattle aquarium. The hearing is good news for City Council Member Nick Licata, who had been getting bullied by his colleagues to move ahead on the plan ["More from the Wild Kingdom," Feb 17] without stopping for public input. GRANT COGSWELL & JOSH FEIT