May 16, 2011 |


Some state agencies hire lobbyists with taxpayer money

Dear Editor,

I have a feeling that most Washingtonians don’t know that state agencies hire lobbyists with taxpayer money to lobby on their behalf so they can get more taxpayer money for their department.

The University of Washington spent over $300,000 on lobbyists in 2009, this is taxpayer money.

Some of the agencies have not reported their lobbying, which include Sound Transit which hid seven years of lobbying of $800K and then got fined by the Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) $15,000 and that is paid out of their operating budget.

I know it is now too late for the 2011 legislative session to put an end to this practice, but I believe we need to tell our representative to outlaw this practice.

Private citizens and corporations are free to do with their money as they wish, but government agencies should be stopped from wasting our money on lobbyists.

Todd Welch

Lake Stevens

Good examples by parents can make a difference

Dear Editor,

Thank you for your thoughtful and insightful article on the resurgence of heroin use in our community.

There are many factors that contribute to substance abuse, but the model in the home is the most important one. Parents need to set an example for their children in personal discipline and self-control.

Parents, educators, and community leaders need to work together to protect our young people from the dangers of all addictions.

Jim Jacobson

Lake Stevens

Relay for Life Lake Stevens a huge success

To the Citizens of the Great Town of Lake Stevens,

When I was first asked to chair this event, I had no idea it would turn into what it is today.

I knew the goals that had been set for us by American Cancer Society would be easy to obtain, this is Lake Stevens. When we get behind something, it will be great. I am proud to say that we surpassed every goal that American Cancer Society set for us, more than one month before Relay.

When we talked about “Paint the Town Purple” I hoped that a few businesses would get on board; I never dreamed 70 businesses would truly turn everything purple. My heart swelled with pride each time I saw a window painted and many times they would bring tears to my eyes. I had many cancer patients tell me how proud they were to live here.

I echo their feelings, the pride I have in this town is hard to put into words. If Relay has needed something, I haven’t had to ask more than a few people to have things donated. When I have needed help, this town has steped up and provided it.

While this Relay is upon us, it does not mean we are done. We have a huge goal of $250,000. We have until August 31 to achieve it. I want to show the nation that Relay for Life Lake Stevens can be the best Rookie Relay in 2011!

Thank you in advance for continuing to support us, in our quest to find a cure for every cancer. If you see a car wash, bake sale or Zumba fundraiser with Relay for Life’s name, please stop by. If you see a business decked out in purple, please thank them.

If I could thank each and every donor personally I would. You have made a difference; your support means the world to me. Someone asked me the other day if all the hours I put into Relay for Life are worth it, my answer without thinking, “If one person’s life is saved, it’s worth every hour.”

“Until there is A Cure” I will fight, I hope you will too.

Kim Demary

Event Chair

Relay for Life Lake Stevens 2011

Tax breaks for big corporations not helping economy

Dear Editor,

In the May 4 Journal, Mr. Welch bemoans the failure of government and call for reducing taxes, regulations and other “obstacles” to job growth. What taxes? What regulations?

In 2009, Exxon made $19 billion in profit - $0 taxes. Bank of America made $4 billion in profit - $0 taxes. Over the past five years, GE made $19 billion in profit - $0 taxes. Chevron made $10 billion profit in 2009 - $0 taxes. Boeing and Citigroup can be added to this list.

Between 1998 to 2005, two out of three US corporations paid no federal income taxes, according to the GAO.

How much did you pay the IRS? A rhetorical question, but if it was $1.00, it was more than these mega-corporations paid.

As for regulations, it was the lack of regulations in the banking industry that caused the current financial mess we are all in. It was the lack of firm regulations with teeth that led to the oil spill catastrophe in the Gulf Coast. And you want fewer regulations?

With all of the tax breaks these large corporations have received, I don’t see many of them spending their “savings” on jobs. They’re spending it on lavish salaries and bonuses for their executives rather than investing in hiring and promoting a recovery from a mess they created.

We shouldn’t let our ideology blind us to the real facts and how they impact us.

Robert Stevens

Lake Stevens

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