By Miki Mullor
Mayor Christie Malchow announced today on her Facebook page today that she will not seek re-election. Malchow’s seat is up for election this year.
Malchow is completing her first term.
Malchow’s Facebook post:
A split Sammamish City Council tonight passed the new traffic concurrency rules.
The “M4,” Mayor Christie Malchow, Deputy Mayor Karen Moran and Council Members Tom Hornish and Chris Ross, voted for the new volume/capacity (V/C) rule that brings some measurement of reality on the roads into Sammamish concurrency rules.
The “V3,” Council Members Ramiro Valderrama, Pam Stuart and Jason Ritchie, voted against.Continue reading
By Miki Mullor
Sammamish Council Member Ramiro Valderrama distorted advice from an organization
before the City Council August recess that misled fellow council members about key laws governing growth, traffic and development in Sammamish.
Emails obtained from Municipal Resource Service Center (MRSC), a non-profit legal advice organization, reveal Valderrama’s selective citing of laws and legal advice from MRSC painted a picture that support his strategy to continue over development in Sammamish.
In fact, the emails, when read in their entirety, paint a different picture.
Jessi Bon, Deputy City Manager, resigned today, as indicated in the email below sent to staff.
Bon gives family reasons for taking a job at Mercer Island as Director of Parks and Recreation.
The email ends with “Stay strong”.
With four Council Members out of seven retiring, this year’s election is guaranteed to see a power shift in the Council that could have deep ramifications for the direction of the City beginning in 2018.
As I announced last August, and which is also discussed in the “About” section, I moved after 20 years in Sammamish to Bainbridge Island in August. While I’ve been covering many issues from Bainbridge, it won’t be feasible to me to be on-the-spot to cover the campaigns of those seeking a Council seat.
There are already six candidates announced for the four positions. More are expected. So a writer who lives in Sammamish is desired.
All too often, elected officials forget who they were elected to serve. This unfortunately is the case with some on the Sammamish City Council.
During the course of this year, Sammamish Comment chronicled a number of important issues in which the Council and the City Administration practiced benign neglect. In many cases, individual Council Members have pursued personal agenda, played follow the leader or blamed citizens for being whiners or misunderstanding what they are supposed to understand.
These attitudes are why Washington D.C. and Olympia (WA) are so dysfunctional and failing to serve the peoples’ interest in pursuit of their own. It’s why Sammamish citizens voted to incorporate in 1998: to get out from under an unresponsive King County government that ignored our wishes and needs.
Certainly being our own City proved far more beneficial than being under the King County Council. We have roads and parks we weren’t going to get under the County rule. We have community events, notably our Fourth of July, Sammamish Nights and similar activities we’d never get under King County.
But the City is letting citizens down in a number of areas due to the benign neglect and personal agendas referenced above. For example:
Skipping the Cascadia Rising earthquake drill
There are a lot of things in government that fall within the category of “What were you thinking?”
Skipping the Cascadia Rising earthquake drill tops the list.
The Sammamish Comment revealed October 5 that the City skipped the sign-up deadline last year to participate in a regional Cascadia Rising earthquake preparedness drill that outlines a scenario of a 7.2 magnitude earthquake hitting Sammamish. (The scenario’s epicenter is the Cascadia Subduction Fault off the Washington coastline, with a 9.0 epicenter magnitude.)
Sammamish had no plans to participate. Until after The Comment began making inquiries.
This is a huge public safety issue. This is the worst example of benign neglect yet by our City and City Council. Read the details here.
The Sammamish City Council election this year has a number of issues before voters. One of the key issues is not about roads or trees or parks or finances. It’s about a philosophy of government. It’s about standing up to the government and for the citizens or standing up for the status quo.
Mayor Tom Vance, seeking reelection, and Mark Cross, a former mayor and city councilman seeking to return to the Council after a four year absence, stand for the status quo. They have endorsed each other for election.
Council Member Ramiro Valderrama, seeking reelection to a second term, Christie Malchow (running opposite Cross) and Tom Hornish (opposite Vance), both newcomers, stand for standing up to government and for the citizens.