[EDITOR'S NOTE: This column by Earl Gipson is a view of SeaTac city government. It does not necessarily reflect the views of The SeaTac Blog nor its staff. We are seeking additional regular columnists to reflect opinions and views of SeaTac residents. Those interested can e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.]
by Earl Gipson
In Tuesday’s Planning Commission meeting Commission Chair Tapio let loose with all guns. What triggered this (I think) was a NEW 172 page Comprehensive Plan regarding SeaTac’s Surface Water Management. This document was not scheduled to be reviewed by the Planning Commission although it has extensive land use ramifications. The only reason he saw it was, like myself, he is a party of record to these type of documents. The rest of the Commission was not even notified of its popping into existence. This comes right after the surprise new and misrepresented Fire Code just two weeks ago.
That was only the trigger and then Mr. Tapio went into a litany of passionate woes with the City, its Planning, and management and how property and business owners are under constant attack by new regulations. In addition, in reference to general City conditions, he mentioned his own SeaTac home had been broken into to, the houses built in the City that were broken into almost as soon as they were sold/built, and the deterioration of the schools. Lets say he was on a roll and the frustration of all the years trying to improve things came to a head. I have never seen him in this manner but who can blame him with the thousands of hours he has put in and being ignored for the most part not to mention his own home being violated.
For a minute there I thought he was going to resign but thank goodness he did not. He is the most knowledgeable of the Commissioners (not to diminish the contributions of the other Commissioners) and it would be a great loss to the City if he left.
Lets just say Commissioner Tapio, I feel your pain and it is just one of the reasons I write this column. I have been to all the Commission Meetings and Council Meetings (since 2009) and the stakeholders have been ignored for many years. We now have new management in the Community and Economic Department along with the Planning division. Lets give them the benefit of the doubt and if that don’t work the non-resident City Manager needs to go as well (perhaps sooner than later).
The Council needs to hear the recording of Tuesday’s meeting to get a true understanding of what was said.