ISSUE 2: KEEP GOVERNMENT EFFICIENT
The city budget is under pressure. We already have the highest sales tax in the nation (10.5%) yet each year balancing the budget is a challenge and there is pressure for more taxation. Here are some ideas to push back against the ever increasing taxation:
a. Debt repayment on Rosehill Community Center is $900,000 per year. The operating expenses make this burden even greater. The new Rosehill is staffed by paid professionals whereas the old Rosehill was staffed by volunteers. This further adds to the budget implications of the new Rosehill Community Center. An example of great value is the new Mukilteo Boys and Girls Club (MBGC) next to the Police Station. The total investment of the City is $500,000 yet the city now has a $10,000,000 facility for our youth (Peter Zieve contributed $200,000 for the clubhouse and Electroimpact signed over the use of a $1M parking lot for the fields). The day the new Mukilteo Boys and Girls Club opened it was full of people. The city is not responsible for the operation of the new MBGC. That is their responsibility. Is it too late to apply this model to the Rosehill Community Center? Could the operation of the facility be privatized? It is something that I think should be explored and it would take pressure off of the city budget.
b. In 2016 a “policy analyst” was hired by the city. The “policy analyst” proposed a “Transportation Benefit District” and a plethora of new taxes to deal with “deteriorated roads”. One tax increase of 0.1% sales tax went to the voters and was barely approved and made effective April 1, 2018. Two new administrative positions would be created. Mukilteo has a fully staffed Department of Public Works located at 4206 78th St SW so we didn’t need this redundancy. The “policy analyst position” was terminated by the council on December 4, 2017 immediately after the November, 2017 election. My campaign put out thousands of hand bills exposing this bad idea. When the policy analyst was fired by the Council the Mayor gave the “policy analyst” three months of severance instead of the usual two months. The extra month of severance cost the city $6300. To make matters worse the Council hired an outside attorney at a cost of $12,000 to investigate the extra month of severance. At Electroimpact I have banned the various work groups from hiring outside attorneys. Total waste of money.
c. The City hired a high dollar law firm to try to stop the airport. It said in the July 19, 2017 Beacon that $624,215 of city funds were spent. Airports are controlled by the Federal Government therefore the expenditure was unwise and ineffective.
d. The mayor has decided to build a Peace Park to memorialize the triple murders of 2016. The site of the Peace Park is west of the Speedway in the Old Town area. We need more parks in the Harbour Pointe area, not the old town area. We all feel terrible about the triple murder which occurred in 2016 but how is this park going to help? I sat in the council session when the Peace Park was brought up for public comment and every single respondent said that in order to have the desired effect the memorial needs to be on the grounds or adjacent to Kamiak High School. In traffic it is as a hard slog from Kamiak to this Peace Park location which will not offer parking. In addition to the cost of the park, which is $400,000, it will need to be maintained by the city adding an annual expense.
e. Electroimpact created the Youth Technology Lab, a technology camp for kids. All the resources required are available inside the walls of Electroimpact. We advertised in the Beacon and opened it up to all of Mukilteo free of charge. A job as trainer was offered to the Kamiak robot club. That worked well and this summer two of the Kamiak trainers (Victor Le and Ryan Handran) are summer interns at Electroimpact. When the Kamiak trainers couldn’t solve a problem Electroimpact engineers are close by and are happy to help. The Youth Technology Lab was recently visited by Kevin Rohrbach, Principle of Harbour Pointe Middle School. There were two articles in the Beacon about the camp that you can read on my Facebook page @peterzieve No government funds were required and no fees were charged.
f. The most effective job training in the Mukilteo area is at Electroimpact and requires no government funding. Approximately 150 Mukilteo residents work at Electroimpact. About 100 Kamiak students got their first job working as an intern or apprentice at Electroimpact. Here is the list of Kamiak to full-time employment at Electroimpact:
Current Kamiak Summer Interns:
g. I am one of the largest taxpayers to the city. But for my job of City Council member I will contribute 100% of any money I get to the Mukilteo Boys and Girls Club.