Seattle Tunnel versus Viaduct alternatives

March 18, 2009

Mr. Scott White.

I believe you are on the Transportation Committee when I looked this up previously.

Am the treasurer for the initiative I-99 which seeks to take away the right-of-way for the Seattle Tunnel as proposed by Mayor Nickels.

The cost of a tunnel at this time is extremely expensive and Elizabeth Campbell who is the sponsor of the initiative will be having a 100% effort in gathering signatures for this initiative after her Winter 09 class ends.  I will join the signature gathering efforts after the tax season ends on April 15, 2009.

However, this effort would be null and void if the funding for the Seattle Tunnel is not approved by the State Legislature and yourself and the committee on Transportation.

Have spoken with many people concerning this effort, obviously, and almost virtually everyone is opposed to the Seattle Tunnel idea.  Some comments circle around the State Budget and the need to balance the budget and others also still do love the idea of the beautiful travel route which the current Seattle Waterfront Viaduct passes by.  Others are extremely upset that voting does not count and recollecting the vote which overwhelmingly ditched a tunnel option previously.  The voters do not like to be ignored whatsoever.  As you recall I had said I would approve a teachers pay raise as per the voters even if no other state employee were to get a raise as per the voters electing this a few years ago.

Personally I still would like a retrofit of the Viaduct and then an accumulation of funds for the setting aside of funds for other more appropriate roadway construction in about 20 years or so.  I assume you would still like a Street Version of the Viaduct.  Both are incongruent with the Seattle Tunnel alternative and I would wish you to vote “NO” on any approval of a Seattle Tunnel version.

Thanking you in advance for your deep concern on this important roadway structure for the beautification of the Seattle Waterfront and the drivers of Seattle and the enjoyment of the beautiful vista which drivers are able to enjoy at the present time.  An enjoyable drive while in Seattle will remain if you agree to Vote against funding of a Seattle Tunnel project. 

Thanks

Keith Ljunghammar, EA


HB 1286 – Defamatory Candidates

February 9, 2009

HB 1286 – Defamatory Candidates. If the candidates can’t take it they should not be in the legislature. Our countries history has been replete with inflammatory statements. The John Quincy Adams presidential races was all about inflammatory comments on Adams and Jacksons part. Get over it.


HB 1946 Higher education on-line

February 8, 2009

HB 1946 – Relating to higher education online technology.

Again a question of accreditation may be significant here. What are the qualifications. Not from a state level but from a federal level. At present if classes are on-line then no education credit can be claimed. This is a tight rope to watch. The continueing inclusion of the available from a tax standpoint is necessary. Proctoring or in classroom classes. Wheeling in a lecture into a room with an audio visual clerk may be the future. Will the teachers still get paid. Will the same teacher still do follow. Travel time is a big expenses for multi-institution faculty members. This may be a way to give raises but will the instruction remain steady or faulter. Question and answer time is imperative. Some students learn by hearing and some by seeing.


HB 1909 Eliminating the Death Penalty

February 8, 2009

HB 1909 – Relating to reducing criminal justice expenses by eliminating the death penalty in favor of lfe incarceration.

The requirement that the State reduce the sentence from death to life is ridiculous. A convicted felon may want to be “finalized” for his or her deeds to society. If an inmate requests then this duty should still be imposed upon the inmate as a responsibility of the state to assist in the self-death sentence.


White, Scott Sponsored Leg. 46th dist, pos 1 WA

January 31, 2009

HB 1619 Capital projects funds by school districts

Page 4, line 16-24. The theme here is that school maintenance projects are not needing a levy. This however should be part of the general operating expenses of the school district. If the funds are coming from the State Tree Crop Revenues then this should be separate. However, there should not be an automatic levy for the maintenance of school districts. I do agree that funds should be allocated and set aside for expected continueing maintenance of the operating expenses of buildings. This bill sounds like it automatically levies maintenance costs on the general population. Although I do agree that maintenance should not be requiring a levy I do believe that maintenance operations should be coming from the general budget. A separate account for maintenance would be following GAAP rules or as I would put it Generally Accepted Homeownership Association Principles.

The one thing lacking here is uniformity across the State for maintenance. Does one school district have the right to replace windows every ten years while another school district only replaces the windows every twenty years. What about painting. Weather can bring a different result to the answer of this question.

HB 1775 Regulation of certain limousine carriers.

Here I read this last night so I will not provide specific line numbers.

Between the lines is sounds like the Port of Seattle is trying to creating a limousine service from the Sea-Tac to other outlying areas. But I do have some qualifying questions for this Bill.

1) Taxi cab drivers are able to start driving as a first time job. Some testing of qualifications are necessary. English seems to be an immediately desired qualification. Should the qualification for English and understanding of English be a higher qualification.

2) It would seem to me that a basic understanding of locations within the City of Seattle should be pressed as a requirement. So many of the taxi cab drivers are not qualified to answer basic scenic qualifications. A testing of scenic qualifications should be made.

3) Taxi cab drivers are artificially pressed into service to show off the advantages and disadvantages of the beauty of an area while driving a guest to their hotel/motel of choice or their desired destination. A verbal testing or a test driving of this should be done. Take out one or two hours of showing scenic driving to get a enjoyable ride by the patron testing.

4) Quite a few taxi cab drivers still do talk on the cell phone while they are driving the patron to a location.

5) English should be spoken only in the limousine unless the patron and the driver are able to speak the same language. This is not just as a convenience but as a safety requirement. The patron knows sometimes where they want to go. Other conversations on a cell phone are also not paying attention to the needs of the patron.

6) Radios unless requested should not be used in a taxi cab or limousine unless the patron desires.

7) A limousine driver should not be able to apply for a limousine license unless the driver has completed a minimum of one year as a taxi cab driver.

8) The testing requirements for a taxi cab driver and a limousine driver shall be from the same tests except for additional tests indicated above. So the requirements of testing for a limousine driver and a taxi cab driver shall not need to be duplicated if the taxi cab drivers license is held currently.

HB 1797 Examining rural and resource lands

Page 3, line 20-22.

I do not like to see a director exclusively having a right to direct and make expenses for a fund. A separate treasurer should be authorized for paying the bills. A co-signature if necessary by the director could be authorized. The responsibility of having a checkbook and control of who is aurhorized to make expenses is dangerous. The accounting process is a mission by iteself and cumbersome sometimes also. A directors position is cumbersome and a mission by itself. The State Treasurer should be able to go to the funds treasurer for auditing purposes while the director contnues with operations.

Shouldn’t a limitation of the board be to include members of the board from those affected counties. In other words, tribal members from Yakama may not be an appropriate tribal member. Also, concerning tribal members, you might designate former tribal councilmembers so they would have the time and not have competing time non-allowances. More specifically the Yakamas might be embarking on a long-term project which would help in their tribal members incomes and pride anyways.

The wording is not included in the legislation for the accounting to be presented to all donors above a separate level and generally having financing available or internet accessible to all levels of donors.

HB 1841 Adding a faculty member to the governing board of each four-year institution of higher education.

page 3 line 19 – 22.

If the faculty member is excused then also the student should be excused unless the administrative board invites back and only during the time of the invitation. I am not seeing why a student member would need to be at a board meeting while questions directly about a faculty member are being addressed and likewise I do not see why a faculty member would have to be present while a student matter is being addressed.

page 3, line 30.

It would seem to me that a student who is part-time will have a different perspective than a full-time student. Also, a part-time student may be more attune to the differences which the administration may be trying to address.

A qualification of a student in the citizenship and residence of the United States and of Washington State should be required. Someone outside of the State would have no long-term commitment to continueing operations and improvement of the University as a whole.

Seems that each University has a different specification for number of board members. For the cost of saving money the number of Regents should be reduced. An odd number of Regents should be appointment so that no even number of voting would be allowed.

A student member in no way should be used to break a tie vote. By having the administration portion of the board an even number then this could happen.

END