Valderrama now supports Sahalee Way project he once called lipstick on a hippo

By Scott Hamilton

Commentary

July 29, 2019: The Sahalee Way project Sammamish City Council Member Ramiro Valderrama now advocates approving is the same ones he labeled “lipstick on a pig” and “lipstick on a hippo” in January 2017.

Ramiro Valderrama

Valderrama opposed the 2015 plan, comparing with a proposed set of projects for East Lake Sammamish Parkway in 2011 that he labeled the “most wasteful project in the city’s history.”

In posts on Facebook last week, Valderrama falsely claimed he supported the Sahalee Way project but only after a Transportation Management Plan was prepared.

Valderrama made his remarks on a Facebook thread commenting about the petition filed by former Mayor Don Gerend seeking to overturn a traffic concurrency adopted two months ago.

Development of the next phase of the Sammamish Town Center cannot pass the concurrency standard on Sahalee Way.

Continue reading

Accusations fly as Council drops committees

By Scott Hamilton

Accusations flew between the two factions of the Sammamish City Council as it considered whether to drop committees in favor of a council Committee of the Whole or some hybrid system.

Motives were questioned, personal attacks flew and “blind ambition” was alleged as interfering with the work of the committees.

Two members claimed the body is a “do-nothing” council.

The meeting again illustrated the dysfunction and political rivalries between the majority and minority factions.

Continue reading

Reject power play to dissolve committees

By Scott Hamilton

Commentary

The Sammamish City Council tomorrow will take up a motion to dissolve its

Council Member Tom Hornish

committees, where a lot of spade work is done on issues, and adopt a Committee of the Whole (COW) process instead.

This move should be rejected. It’s been tried before. The council ultimately returned to the committee system. This city council should not repeat the mistake of the past.

Continue reading

No good solutions forces City Council to rethink transportation projects plan

By Miki Mullor
Editor

  • No real solutions to traffic congestion
  • Phantom traffic projects used to approve developments 
Continue reading

Ritchie, Stuart owe mayor public apology over sexist remark

By Scott Hamilton

Commentary

If residents wonder why the Sammamish City Council is mired in acrimony, one need look no farther than the June 18 meeting.

Council Member Pam Stuart

Jason Ritchie

Jason Ritchie

Sammamish Council Member Jason Ritchie isn’t wrong when he cites frustration about the divisions in the city council.

Nor is he wrong when he fingers members of the majority of the council for their contributions to the split.

But Ritchie needs to look in the mirror and accept responsibility for his own actions.

Continue reading

Town Center Phase I details revealed: 424 homes on 13.5 Acres; blocked by concurrency

By Miki Mullor
Editor

  • STCA LLC, the largest landowner in the Town Center, files its first permit application
  • The development site is between SE 4th and the Lower Commons park
  • City Manager recently said the development will likely fail the current concurrency
  • Valderrama advocates for STCA to relax concurrency
Continue reading

Ritchie accuses the council majority of denying a debate on plastic bags ban; Malchow denies

Miki Mullor
Editor

  • Ritchie and Ross trade heated text messages
  • The legislative committee failed to get the required three votes for a proclamation
  • Discussion on the plastic bag ban postponed

The dysfunction of Sammamish City Council reached new levels over a proclamation in support of Senate Bill 5323 that calls for a state-wide plastic bag ban and a 5 cents tax for paper bags.

Continue reading