Opinion

Letter writer is uninformed

In the July 6 edition of your newspaper I read a letter to the editor


from a Laurie Baker in which she accused members of the [Snoqualmie]


Planning Commission, and me specifically, of accepting bribes. To be accused


by an obviously uninformed, uninvolved and ill-educated individual as


Ms. Baker of accepting a bribe is at the very least an insult. Shame on you,


Mr. McKiernan, for allowing your newspaper to be used as a public vehicle


to promote lies and slander, especially against individuals who actually


attempt to make a difference within the community.


Ms. Baker is uninformed in many ways, not the least of which in


her statement that I, as a tile contractor, am "anticipating the tile contract


on the 380-some homes to be built" (at Falls Crossing). I'm always


amazed when someone lets something fall out of their mouths without any


knowledge of the facts or of the person they are slandering. First, our


company, Sherman Tile & Interiors, Inc., has never performed any work for


contractors that would probably be building homes at Falls Crossing if it


passes, and we have never done any work on the much larger development


of Snoqualmie Ridge. Most people in this community know we do not


work on large tracts of homes, we work only for small builders who build


single family, custom homes, one at a time.


Further, Ms. Baker has shown everyone how uninformed she is


about the very city in which she lives. If she would ever bother to come into


downtown Snoqualmie, she would know that our building where our


showroom was located is for lease, and that we are attempting to slowly get out of


tile contracting and only work on restoring historic properties in the


Valley. Maybe Ms. Baker will start frequenting downtown Snoqualmie and


actually learn something about her town in person.


Sadly, Ms. Baker is uninvolved, just like so many other citizens of


this little burg. In reviewing the reams of documentation on Falls Crossing


including all the exhibit lists, I am unable to locate so much as a


postcard from Ms. Baker, let alone any statement of fact addressing any issue


we as planning commissioners are required by law to take into


consideration when reviewing projects such as this. Not one word, even after


two separate public comment periods, two public hearings and countless


meetings. It certainly must be nice to sit on the sidelines, wait for decisions to


be made and then attack those that made the decision.


Ms. Baker is ill-educated and shows this in her lack of


understanding of the standards we are required to apply and the lengths we have


gone in order to mitigate impacts, including especially the Snoqualmie


Falls viewshed protection. We cannot stop any project just because we may


not like it, we have to have a legally defensible reason which is based on


the Snoqualmie Comprehensive Plan, the Mixed Use Ordinance, and the


Final EIS.


As to this newspaper and the editor's role in allowing such an


ignominious letter as Ms. Baker's to be printed in the first place, I'm


sure you'll hide behind a loose interpretation of the First Amendment and


plead for the public's "right to know"


rather than, as responsible papers do, editing out such inflammatory,


slanderous and potentially legally actionable commentary. Do you have any reason


to believe Ms. Baker's allegations are true?


Perhaps, in your position as editor of this publication, you would


consider eliminating some of your fillers, maybe one of your eight pages


of sports, and attempt to squeeze in on the Community page a series of


articles educating the local populace — and yourself — on our system of


government in Snoqualmie, what the duties of the planning commission


are, how planning commissioners get the positions in which we serve, what


the duties of the city council are and how the councilmembers get their


positions, etc. Maybe then you and other citizens, like Ms. Baker, would


actually become informed and involved.


K. Dale Sherman


Snoqualmie Planning Commission

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