Letters to the Editor Still waiting for next round of rate increases

At last, a worthy adversary.

At last, a worthy adversary.

In one corner we have Trip Hart representing the city and in the other corner we have Mike Qualls representing someone who actually lives in town and pays around $60 just for sewer every month. So here we are today at $60 per month for two people and still waiting for this year’s increase. Rumor is we are looking at another 25 percent hike and that will put my sewer bill around $75 per month. I have asked the city to give me some idea on where our rates are headed without any luck. Now I’m asking Trip to ask his friends at the city, what city folks can expect this year and the next 10 or 20 years on where our sewer rates are headed.

And while he is there, how about the other utilities that are now in the red per information from the city council meeting held on April 13, 2009. Are we to expect any other surprises in the future? We all know the city mayor likes to keep information to himself until the last minute. No sense in warning anyone. Might start a stampede. With the new sewer plant still needing more funds, can we expect another rate increase from that loan? Another rumor is we still need another $4 million to finish the project. And why did we start a project without all the funds needed to finish it? Was this planned? Sounds like poor planning. Will that increase my rates again?

So, do we now have some of the most expensive rates around? Only if you live in the city limits. So for those of you looking to annex into the city, get ready to show the city the money and forget about hanging baskets. If Trip can get some straight answers, I will move on to the next article and spend more time on the city gas debacle.

I would also like to thank The Courier-Herald for allowing others and myself to voice their opinion.

M. Qualls


All must work to help save state parks

You may have heard that as many as 40 to 50 Washington state parks, including Nolte State Park, may have to be closed due to budget shortfalls.There is a bill before the Legislature that could give the citizens of our state a chance to save our parks by paying $5 when they register their cars each year. This bill is modeled after Montana’s which has had great success. Most people use state parks and $5 is a small price to pay for that privilege. HB 2339 gives people the chance to opt out if they choose not to support state parks.

Experience in other states shows most people choose to support their parks. If parks are closed they will not be maintained and they will most certainly be vandalized. We all have favorite swimming lakes and campgrounds that will be closed and many commisioned state park rangers that the state has invested a great deal of tax money into training will be lost.

Please call the Legislative Hotline 1-800-562-6000 between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. and support House Bill 2339. All you have to give them is your name and address and tell them you support HB 2339. It should only take about three minutes of your time.

Please forward e-mail to all your friends in Washington state. These parks belong to us.

Gary Parkert


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