Opinion

Community Congress needs you

The first key day for Winslow Tomorrow:

the day after tomorrow.

That’s when, we are reminded, applications are due for the new Community Congress, a citizen forum being established by the city to hash out the future of our downtown. The congress will have perhaps 75 seats, with committees examining traffic, pedestrian, parking, business, utility and financing issues. The application form – available in the mayor’s office, or online – polls hopefuls on their place of residence and their general connection to Winslow Way, as shopper, employee, property owner, neighbor, commuter. Also sought is information on relevant professional training (i.e. urban design and planning, arts, legal, environmental, landscaping, non-motorized travel, etc.) and past public service (elected office, various local boards and commissions) – and a brief description of why you would like to serve. The commitment will require four to eight hours per week in two-week increments, over a six to eight-month period.

The city is counting on a broad representation of interests and expertise; yet we’re surprised at what we’re told has been a somewhat sluggish response to this opportunity, which promises to be our most dynamic planning process since the Comprehensive Plan Advisory Committee of a decade ago.

Again, for the future of downtown, we urge readers to get involved. Some leadership positions are paid, if that’s any inspiration.

The barrage

In other news: loyal Review reader Kevin Schmidt emailed us from Eagledale this week, inquiring whether we’d heard anything about the private fireworks display/aerial bombardment that thunders over the south end of the island about this time every year. He was one of several people to ask about the barrage – set off from a barge near Manchester for the enjoyment of its patron, a presumably wealthy Eastsider with a party boat – which in past years has erupted without warning (except for one year when the county fire marshal sent out a news release warning hapless islanders to take cover).

We had to confess we had not heard anything and were a little pressed for time, chasing down leads on the city administrator hiring. “But you could always call the fire marshal yourself,” we suggested, “and let us know what you find out.”

Mr. Schmidt did just that, and offered this report:

“Fireworks are Saturday,

BUT the permit this year was issued by KING County as the location has changed.

Puget Sound between Bainbridge and Elliott Bay.

So east of us rather than south, and sounds like it’s right in the shipping lanes and ferry route, but doubt if that’s actually the case.”

Thanks, Kevin, and there you have it, readers. Keep the pets indoors this Saturday evening, and head to our eastern shore if you actually want to see the display. As Fitzgerald might have said, the rich really are different than you and me; they can afford bigger fireworks.

Community Events, April 2014

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