North Bend: Why so spendy? | Snoqualmie Valley Letters to the Editor

Letters from residents of the Snoqualmie Valley and nearby areas.

Budget cuts

Am I missing something here? I just read that city, county and state government have no idea where they are going to come up with the revenue to replace what the high cost of gas and goods are doing to their budgets.

Maybe the city of North Bend could have saved a bunch of money by not putting in a roundabout on the east end of town. Come to think of it, I drive through there many times a day and I never saw a traffic issue in the first place. Being a taxpayer within city limits, I would like to know the reasoning behind putting one there.

Maybe someone should ask our county officials why they’re going to put a roundabout in at 436th and North Bend Way. Hmmm, lets see, what would be cheaper? A roundabout or three stop signs? I’m no rocket scientist, but I can even figure out that one.

Why do city, county and state officials feel an obligation to throw millions of our tax dollars away? Why is the city of North Bend in such a hurry to annex all of this property east of town? Who benefits from this annexation? What is wrong with the city of North Bend staying the same size as it has always been? I’m sure the developers are loving it, but are our elected officials looking out for the citizens’ best interest? If so, I wish someone would explain it to me, because I just plain don’t see it.

Ron Brown

North Bend

Flood control

Dear Snoqualmie Mayor Matt Larson and City Administrator Bob Larson: We want you to know how much we appreciate the ongoing efforts by the city of Snoqualmie and King County to improve both Kimball Creek South and East.

For years, this once natural and beautiful stream has been neglected. About two years ago, after the last flood, we seriously began looking at Mother Nature’s effects upon our lands. We found that the wetlands, the creeks and the drainage systems were simply not working. There were no fish and decreasing wildlife. The stream was blocked, so surface water simply sat. The land was thoroughly saturated, so it provided no help during heavy rains or floods. Water quality was really poor.

Today, because of the joint efforts of the county and city, this dismal picture has improved. While this may not be noticeable to all, for those of us who live and have land on the creek, good things have happened. Your efforts with King County Flood Control have secured funds to map and re-channel the creek. Your work with Tetra Tech has helped pinpoint roadblocks and set priorities. Most recently, the removal of a large blockage on the creek has noticeably reduced water levels.

For us, the water level on approximately five acres of pasture land has dropped roughly six inches. Those reductions have completely removed water from about two acres. This is really important to all of us. Our perspective is that this natural reservoir is finally going to provide some meaningful degree of water retention and flood control. By improving stream flow, water will move more speedily and more naturally. By reducing water levels, we will increase the capacity of this reservoir to store thousands of gallons when the rains really come. Parenthetically, at the Ridge and other developments, artificial ponds have been created. These ponds cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. The restoration of Kimball Creek and its natural reservoirs is doing what Mother Nature intended and ultimately saving the taxpayer a lot of money.

While this project is a big undertaking, we are on our way. Thank you, Kirk Holmes, for all our meetings and for representing the city so effectively. Thank you, Mayor Larson, for talking with the county about our issues and for bringing together council members and the leadership of the Flood Control District to work on this issue. Thank you, Mike Roy, for your communication with us and follow-up with the county. As a whole, your patience, your understanding, your leadership and team cooperation is much appreciated.

Maryanne Anthony, Warren and Maryanne Anthony Halverson, Pat and Jim Jordan, Johnet Anthony

Snoqualmie, Bellevue

Valley influence

Paul Sills, one of the founders of the improvisational comedy group “The Second City,” where comedians including John Belushi, Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, Stephen Colbert and Mike Myers learned their craft, died early Monday, June 9. He was 80.

I would like our community to know about this important and influential man and his and his mother’s influence on theater in general and the theater scene here in the Snoqualmie Valley in particular.

Paul Sills was on the advisory board of our local theater, Valley Center Stage. I had the great gift of working with Paul, whose mother is Viola Spolin, the woman whose work he and I have dedicated ourselves to. I studied with Viola Spolin for 17 years and was a very close friend to Viola and Paul. Their work has given my artistic career a direction and purpose.

I utilize the work of Viola Spolin to train and direct local players in all our productions. I also have been offering classes in Spolin’s theater games for both adults and kids for several years. The Valley Center Stage has produced two of Paul’s productions, “Story Theater” and our annual Christmas show, “A Christmas Carol,” adapted for the stage by Paul. The Snoqualmie Valley is a richer place because of Paul Sills and Viola Spolin and I will miss Paul, as I do his mother, and continue to carry on the tradition and art they created.

Gary Schwartz

Artistic Director, Valley Center Stage

Thank you, Fall City

We had such great weather for our street fair this year. I hope you were able to move about town and enjoy the [Fall City Days] performances and music sponsored by Fall City Arts and 4Culture.

The new Fun Run crew, Kirk, Debbie, Yvonne and Deric, did an awesome job. Even with last- minute registrations and working around a new traffic circle, the race went off without a hitch. Good work!

The parade was very colorful as usual, with so many wonderful performances and floats. Libby, Jane and Anne worked very hard. Anne, you will be missed, but Carnation is gaining a great parade coordinator. Anyone interested in helping Libby and Jane with the parade in 2009, please let us know.

Carmen and Melody got a good dose of sunshine, but held down the merchandise table for us, minus a canopy. We have more shirts, hats and mugs to sell throughout the summer at Fall City Cuts.

Special thanks goes to two new staging and electrical crew members, Steve Turcotte and Greg Mason. Thank you to Nancy and her “pit” crew for directing our second annual watermelon eating contest, minus a megaphone.

Down at Fall City Elementary School, the hoop-fest team headed by Curtis Downer and Eric Riley organized a fun and successful competition.

Our traffic guys did a great job getting the detour route laid out and our security team kept us safe throughout the day. The Boy Scouts kept the streets clean while the trash apes “entertained” the crowd. My vendor coordinators, Cheri and Susan, were extremely helpful, and since we had many last-minute arrivals and cancellations, they had orchestrated a smooth set-up before most of you were even awake!

Judy and Jack Kelley graciously lent me their golf cart again. Steve and Vanessa helped wherever and whenever they were needed. Laurie and Joan, you are the best; all our bills get paid and the checkbook balances!

Last but not least, Lee Alexander, my Fall City Days guru, kept us on our toes and in radio contact throughout the day. He really is the heart of this event.

The river levels were too high for the Duck Derby so we are postponing the race until later in the summer. We’ll confirm the date soon and advertise in the local newsletters and businesses. So don’t miss the chance to join us for some more hometown family fun.

Judy Dix

Fall City