Let’s keep our city water utility | LETTER TO THE EDITOR
September 9, 2012 · Updated 9:33 AM
To the editor:
I moved to Bainbridge in 1987 and shortly after that, I was appointed to BIPAC (Bainbridge Island Planning and Advisory Committee) which was the island’s voice at the Planning Department of Kitsap County.
It was there I developed my passion for home rule. The county’s representatives had little regard for the island’s best interests.
To be fair, in a relatively poor county, Bainbridge was viewed as a source of income to fund much needed services. If that meant ignoring the island’s interest in preserving its rural character then that was the way it was going to be. Complaints we voiced were regarded as the whining of spoiled rich people. BIPAC was a pretend body created to make us think that we had some say in how we were governed. It was a naughty child-parent relationship and we were the naughty children and the county was the all knowing parent. It soon became clear to me that the only way to protect the island was for us to have our own government.
And now years later, it appears we have forgotten the lesson of allowing others to determine the island’s future.
The city council is considering giving control of our water utility to the KPUD. What makes anyone think that they will give first consideration to Bainbridge’s needs? Whose interests will they answer to? Who will make the funding decisions and in whose interest?
If we feel that we do a poor job of management then the answer is to hire/elect better managers — not surrender decision-making to others.
I urge all of you to remember why being governed by outside bodies was so damaging to the island’s future. Keep our water utility our own.
ANNETTE (FORMERLY LANCY) STOLLMAN
Past city council member