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Executive wants Si View to remain open
Editor's note: The following is a letter written to the Valley Record
by King County Executive Ron Sims, Dec. 4, about the potential closing of the
Si View Pool and Community Center. It is reprinted in its entirety.
I want to thank the many Snoqualmie Valley residents who
have called or e-mailed me to oppose the potential closure of Si View Pool
and Community Center and other cuts to the King County Park System
budget. However, I believe there is some confusion about how King County
came to the point in which important park facilities could be lost, and I would
like to set the record straight.
The budget that I sent to the King County Council provided full
funding for Si View Pool and Community Center and the rest of the Park System
program. That proposed budget is a public document and can be viewed
online at http://www.metrokc.gov/budget/2001/proposed/.
I do not support the closure of Si View Pool and Community
Center, nor any cuts to the King County Park System budget.
The budget adopted by the King County Council cut $1.4 million
from the Park System and included another $500,000 in unfunded
mandates. These cuts would require the Park System to close Si View Pool
and Community Center, along with Preston Community Center,
Gold Creek Lodge, and Gracie Hansen Community Center. The cuts
would also force King County to reduce maintenance throughout the Park
System and eliminate its beach lifeguard program, all after-school, family
and summer playground programs and all environmental education
programs, including those for school children all over the county.
These cuts to the Park System are a major reason why I vetoed
the council's budget. The County Council passed a budget that was $54
million out of balance and did not adequately provide for public safety
and other basic services. The council must now work with me to draft a new
budget for King County. My intention is to make sure this new budget
funds all Park System programs, including Si View Pool and Community Center.
I am urging the King County Council to work with me on a
bipartisan basis to resolve this budget impasse so King County can continue
to provide the community with high-quality services and facilities, such
as Si View Pool and Community Center.
King County executive