Every year, the Mayor suggests and the City Council passes a Legislative Agenda. This Agenda does two things:
– It tells you how issues at the County, State, and Federal levels of government could affect you here in Sumner.
– It tells our representatives at the County, State and Federal level how their decisions will affect you through the City and offer suggestions for what is needed.
2016 LEGISLATIVE AGENDA
SR 410 Interchange
One interchange in Sumner at SR 410 and Traffic Avenue simultaneously serves large tractor-trailers driving over 10,000 jobs in Sumner’s industrial zone; commuters trying to access one of the busiest stations on the Sounder line rather than further clogging highways; residents trying to access the main historic downtown; visitors to the Washington State Fairgrounds for major shows year-round. This two-lane interchange is out of date, routinely backing up traffic in all directions and offering no safe route for pedestrians and bicyclists. The passing of the transportation package and “completing” the adjacent Highway 167 only puts more pressure on this interchange if it’s not fixed. We realize this is not a budget year, but please remember that Sumner’s SR 410 interchanges, especially Traffic Avenue, still need a great deal of help from WSDOT.
Please remember to share (revenue)
We understand the budget pressures from McCleary and now Initiative 1366. However, any language of “funding McCleary without raising taxes” usually means the State plans to raid all the shared revenue with cities and make us raise taxes. The current method of funding city services is fundamentally broken. Many revenue options are either constricted, restricted or unpredictable. Cities need stable revenue streams to provide essential services, such as public safety and infrastructure. Strong cities need strong schools, but strong schools also need strong cities.
Review the 1% cap
With the McCleary decision affecting the State and increasing costs from public disclosure requests, perhaps its time to review the arbitrarily installed 1% cap on property tax revenue. With regions in Washington booming, this cap adversely effects citizens by removing a city’s ability to tap large business owners for infrastructure improvements through property taxes. Instead, cities must rely more on sales tax, which is unfair in a city like Sumner that is full of distribution centers and jobs that feed sales tax revenue in other cities where the retail stores are located. Please begin to think about the long-term funding solutions for key infrastructure that drives job and economic growth as well as quality of life.
Update public disclosure laws
Cities support open and transparent government. However, public disclosure laws have not kept pace with technology. Many cities are hampered from taking advantage of modern communications tools simply because the public disclosure laws have not kept up. Sharing information on social media and considering body cameras are all difficult questions simply because of outdated public disclosure laws. Update public disclosure laws so cities can improve their transparency to citizens without the fear of crippling, abusive public disclosure requests and lawsuits.
Mayor Dave Enslow, office 253-299-5790, firstname.lastname@example.org
John Galle, City Administrator, office 253-299-5501, email@example.com
Carmen Palmer, Communications Director, office 253-299-5503, firstname.lastname@example.org