1997 Alki Foundation Questionnaire

Issue: Electric Deregulation

Question:  In light of electric deregulation. What do you believe is the right track for Seattle City Light to make them more competitive in this new competitive environment?   Comments:

City Light has been a self-sufficient and self-sustaining municipal utility and should remain so.  It is a department of the City and to be considered an asset of the people.  To remain competitive:

Top management must be replaced with knowledgeable, competent and experienced utility personnel.
There should be no suggestion or hint of any sellout of the utility.
There should be more professional visibility in the commercial/industrial community to emphasize the competitive spirit of City Light.

Issue: Public Safety

Question:  What are the public safety challenges facing the City of Seattle?  How do you plan to address the challenges?   Comments:

The inadequate numbers of police officers and fire fighters.
The rapid obsolescence of equipment.
The apathetic attitude of the general population toward public safety.

I will increase the Police and Fire departments' "buying power" by eliminating DAS as the "middle man" in the purchase of their equipment.  Obsolescence has come about from an antiquated, bureaucratic way of doing business.   The third problem can be addressed only by public education.  I will help develop an educational program to increase public awareness of the work done by the two departments.

Issue: Fiscal Responsibility

Question:  One of the responsibilities of a City Councilmember is to oversee and implement the City's budget.  Please give 2 - 3 examples of cuts that should be made and 2 - 3 examples of where additional resources are needed.

CUTS:

Eliminate the former Department of Administrative Services (DSA) -- now a division in the Department of Executive Services.
Reduce by one-half the number of employees in the Personnel Department.
Eliminate the analysts hired into City service in violation of Personnel procedures.
Reduce the number of top managers and their staffs.

ADDITIONS:

Supplement the equipment budgets of the Police and Fire departments.
Supplement the budgets associated with the City's infrastructure -- roads, water. electricity, bridges.
Add a new downtown library.  Update and improve services at branch libraries.

Issue: Capital needs

Question:  What are the capital priorities for the City of Seattle over the next five years?  How do you determine capital priorities?   Comments:

The City's "infrastructure" -- Water, Electrical Power, Roads and Bridges -- basically top the capital priorities list.

I will determine capital priorities based on the fiduciary duty of the City Council, namely to first serve the needs of the community-at-large.  The priority list will be based on a points system set on need, function, cost, location of work, time of year, availability of a workforce, etc.

Issue: Privatization

Question:  Do you believe the City should privatize some services in order to improve government efficiencies and save money?   Comments:

Yes.  Eliminating the Department of Administrative Services (DAS) would be a good place to start.  By doing so, the City could go to the private sector for its fleet cars, telecommunications, and data services.

Issue: Housing Affordability

Question:  Housing prices in Seattle are predicted to rise 20% over the next five years.  What can the City do to address the problem of housing affordability?   Comments:

Reduce the number of bureaucratic regulations imposed by the Department of Construction and Land Use (DCLU) on both new and remodeling projects.
Review those "highest and best use" zoning laws for single family residential areas.