On Monday, the Renton City Council asked our council president to co-author a letter of thanks to the Renton legislators that gave us such a successful session this spring, and worked on our behalf in Olympia.
We did not know that the next morning a letter from our Mayor would appear in the Seattle Times, chastizing the entirety of the House and Senate for “lack of action, inability to put personal agendas aside, and failure to work regionally.” Furthermore, the letter seemed to go right over-the-top when reasoning that we will be beaten by foreign nations because we did not get our basketball arena…a logic and tone much too bitter by my standards. Furthermore, I feel it is condescending and misleading to admonish our lawmakers in Olympia with talk about the global economy, just because they would not vote on a tax for a sports arena.
An arena would have been cool, but it’s in the past, and there is no need to let the idea futher distract us from working together on our main priorities.
I would ask all of Washington’s fine and hardworking legislators in Olympia to please not let our mayor’s harsh and dissapointed comments dissuade you from assisting Renton in the future.
A missed opportunity in Renton
By Kathy Keolker
April 24, 2007
Special to The Times
…Last week, the Legislature refused to pass legislation that would simply give King County the local option of extending existing taxes to create a new multipurpose events center….
…Unfortunately, the lack of action in Olympia also reminds us that if we cannot put aside politics and personal agendas and work regionally to solve issues, we will continue to miss out on terrific opportunities. Today, we face competition from far and near — from foreign nations as well as our neighboring states. If we don’t take bold steps and strive for an exciting, sustainable future, we will be left behind.
We must build bridges across political party roadblocks, consider and understand our philosophical differences, set aside jurisdictional parochialism and make regional decisions that benefit our future. It is difficult. It is challenging. And it is mandatory, if we are to succeed in the new global economy.