The Cactus Speaks: Wish this was not really happening

[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 different opinions and views of SeaTac residents. Those interested can e-mail us at [email protected].]

by Earl Gipson

Oh my where to start? You may think TV has some great things but you haven’t had live entertainment like this where our local politicians duck and cover and could produce a soap opera of their own.

The natives are restless
The tension at Tuesday’s Council Meeting during Public Comment was so intense you could have cut it with a knife. SeaTac Citizen, Janice Taylor, even brought her army boots to the podium to emphasize the point of the North SeaTac Park clean up and went on to describe what she and others had to trudge through to even make a dent in the clean up effort. Ms. Taylor, always articulate, berated the Council for its neglect of the north end of SeaTac, the continued disrespect to Council Member Fernald (who actually does stuff) by other Council Members, and doing damage control now that they have been exposed. Citizens Cindy Lou Gailey told the Council to grow up and Chuck Deraili thanked Council Member Fernald for all her efforts.

The Council majority have been disrespecting the taxpayers with stuff like this for years. An illegal raise was given an employee (Pat Patterson) for the Fire Station 46 construction. What did the Council do? Changed the rules so that those raises are now legal, not reported to the Council, and have no cap! Too many members of the SeaTac Public showing up at committee meetings? Eliminate the committees and go to study sessions. City Manager spending too much money? Raise the cap to $50K without Council approval. Do you need to wonder why the City/Council majority does not want a Code of Ethics? I hope the challengers to our Council seats will want one. We NEED one and I have been asking for a long time.

It has taken the neighbors and I ten years to get the City caused flooding and trespass to be corrected in our area and repair the damage. We are almost done. The status of the “stream” was all a lie and the employee/s that kept perpetuating it are no longer with the City. The dollar amount and time this has cost all of us is staggering. Obviously, I am still upset about it and will be until the City/Council majority changes its attitude and behavior towards our Citizens and businesses (hence the Cactus column).

Salmon everywhere (not in SeaTac)
As Campbell’s salmon trip/vacation justification goes into high gear we had a presentation from Doug Osterman, Director of WIRA 9 (Watershed Resource Inventory Area 9). Mr. Osterman is also a Normandy Park Council member that has been challenged on a couple of ethical issues – read more here.

How do these people find each other?! Is there a secret social media website that they share interesting ways to justify ridiculous trips, expenses, and their continued public jobs/paychecks?

Council Member Campbell slow on the uptake…..
Despite continuing and increasing criticism, Council Member Campbell insists she is going on her taxpayer paid salmon trip and AGAIN lashed out at the attending Citizens in Council Comments. This time for Citizens complaining and not doing anything themselves (apparently she was not paying attention to the previous comments). This was met with a rousing vocal backlash from the attending Citizens (and thank you all for not using foul language). The rarely present Deputy Mayor Tony Anderson calls a point of order (probably all he is good for) and the ruckus died down.

Ms Campbell is what we voted for and replaced Rick Forschler? We made a big mistake. Rick where are you? Council Member Campbell is not up for re-election and a re-call is not feasible. She has broken no laws (the Council majority would just change them anyway) and no Code of Ethics. I suppose we can just sit back and watch her self-destruct.

She did say everyone has her phone number and they can contact her any time. Did she consider who the heck it would be that would even want to talk with her? At this point who cares?

We need to clean up our city and perhaps increase the broom budget. Some might use them for sweeping, others for riding.

Here we are
The crossroads of SeaTac’s future are at hand. Is it to be a ghetto or the gateway we claim it to be in the brochures? Our decisions in this upcoming election will decide. If nothing else, please at least vote.


3 Responses to “The Cactus Speaks: Wish this was not really happening”
  1. Kathie Brave says:

    Thank you Earl for continuing to fight for us. And, of course, Pam also, the only council member who cares. I agree with everything you said but wonder who in the world would run? It does take a lot of money (as 3 of our council people know) and most of us don’t have that kind of money. This city has just gotten sad and only a few of us care it seems.

  2. Mike Condon says:

    As a small business owner in SeaTac, not only a small business, but the National Small Business of the year. I am embarrassed by the action of the majority of this council. I have long said that this city has the opportunity to have a strong small business presence.But it will not happen with this city council and city manager. I have worked in business in Renton, Burien, Tukwila, Normandy Park, Seattle, Tacoma and on Fort Lewis, and have never been in a city that is so small business unfriendly. Until these council members are replaced the city will continue to be a nightmare for business in the community. Now they are focusing on not taking care of the rest of the city north of 180th, this has got to be taken as a serious threat to the community that our business has done nothing but try to strengthen since we opened 8 years ago. November is right around the corner, it is time to vote out the incumbents and get candidates that truly care about the whole city, not just south of 180th. As far as Campbell goes she is not worth wasting a breath on. if ignorance is bliss, she has to be the happiest person in the world!!!

  3. Vicki Lockwood says:

    Thanks, Earl, for your thoughtful article and humor … we citizens of SeaTac have endured too much thoughtlessness by many of our existing politicians and we live with the financial drain of their self-absorbed greed every day. Hopefully the tide will turn after the election this fall, and we will enjoy a Council where the majority is thoughtful, actually cares about the citizens of SeaTac, and is financially responsible.