Resident not convinced annexation good idea | Letter to the editor
October 19, 2012 · 11:02 AM
On Nov. 6, residents of the long-independent West Hill neighborhood will vote on whether they wish to be annexed by the City of Renton. As one of those residents, I have to say I’m not convinced. We’re told, for example, that by joining up our local 911 service would dramatically improve. Really? On June 19 2012, Mayor Denis Law was quoted in the Renton Patch as saying: “The [West Hill] has to provide for itself. We’re not going to pull police units from the Highlands or downtown to cover the Hill.” Potential annexees may also know that, after literally years of debate on the subject, the final decision to put the initiative on the ballot went through by only a 4-3 vote of the City Council, and even then over the expressed reservations of the mayor – hardly, perhaps, the most ringing endorsement. Then there’s also the small matter of how, exactly, the City of Renton might actually pay to serve some 33,000 new residents. Readers of the Reporter won’t need to be reminded that the state recently put a $4.2 million bite on their city’s budget, and that funding for even basic amenities like schools and libraries is in a worse state than at any time since the Great Depression. If a cruise ship you happen to be sailing on hits a severe and prolonged tropical storm, that perhaps isn’t the ideal moment to commission a major refurbishment of its leisure facilities.