Sammamish Forum March 12

March 12, 2014

By Administrator

Don’t read into

Klahanie vote

So the vote is in and the majority ruled that there is to be no annexation for Klahanie to the city of Issaquah. It was democracy in action but certainly not a win by a landslide. Considering the population of Klahanie, the number of votes are rather embarrassing in my thinking.

There are several reasons why people vote the way they do and it is not always selfless but for what they will gain. Why wasn’t the vote a landslide would be my question if the Klahanie residents wanted to be a part of Sammamish so badly. The truth behind the vote of yes was what the majority felt they would gain personally by becoming part of Sammamish and possibly not what was best for the city of Issaquah. Just an observation.

They could have just moved to Sammamish if they wanted so badly what they think our city has to offer them. In essence, our City Council bribed them to get them to vote no. Our own Mayor Tom Vance uses the word “honor” when he asks that the city of Issaquah now relinquish the area so that Sammamish can take its prize. Honor, really.

There was no honor in how our City Council went about bullying their way to take Klahanie. I don’t really care personally whether Klahanie is annexed to our city or not. What bothers me is how our city council goes about getting what they want.


Claudia Haunreiter



Lake Washington bond failure could mean dire consequences

Great schools are like money in the bank for homeowners, and that has certainly been true in the past for homeowners in the Lake Washington School District. Those who move to the Seattle area often request to live in the district, and that is good news for local home values.

While in February the two school district levies (needed for school operations) passed, the bond (needed for school modernization and construction) did not, and this places our school district in a difficult situation. Now our community needs to make some tough decisions. What do we want to do with the projected 4,000 new students (the equivalent of two very large high schools) arriving in the next eight years? Do we want to buy 180 portable classrooms (not cheap, by the way, and where do we put them?) for the 180 classrooms we’re short? Should we provide double shifts (one group goes to school in the morning and another in the afternoon) at numerous schools?

Change the boundaries of the schools throughout the district? Bus students away from their neighborhood schools? Do we want to discontinue or reduce all day kindergarten as an option? Go to a year-round school schedule?

These are the choices we face if a bond doesn’t pass. While some may be ok with some of these options, the general population will likely not be, and this could have a profound affect on the desirability of our community.

Fortunately, the school board has recently recommended a reduced bond providing the money required for emergency needs that will be on the ballot April 22nd. Only 17 percent of registered voters between the ages of 18-44 voted on the February levies and bond, and this is the age group most likely to be affected by lack of school facilities.

When you receive your ballots in April, please vote and encourage your friends and neighbors to vote and let your choice be known.


Kerri Nielsen,

Lake Washington Citizens Levy Committee Member/Parent to three(soon to be four) Eastlake graduates



Issaquah has done well

Recently, my wife and her friend, a longtime Issaquah resident, had dinner in Issaquah Highlands. My wife’s friend had not visited the highlands for some time, and her spontaneous response was, “Wow, this is a jaw dropper!”

I could not agree more! Several appealing new restaurants, a YWCA Family Village, well-used mass transit park-and-ride, a movie theater, grocery store, a wide range of retailers, discount gas, a full service hospital, additional medical services, and more to come. Mayor Fred Butler shared in his State of the City report that Bellevue College will build a campus in Issaquah Highlands and Swedish – Issaquah will extend its hospital campus to include additional medical offices.

As a resident of Sammamish, I am proud to be Issaquah’s neighbor! My wife and I visit the highlands often and enjoy our close proximity to its array of new amenities and services. We extend to Issaquah, its current and past City Council leaders, business partners and residents our hearty congratulation on your careful attention to planned growth, protection of the environment and sustainable living in a lovely residential setting!  Your thoughtful approach to development is a reflection of strong leadership!  Thanks, Neighbors!


Jack Barry

The writer is a former member of the Sammamish City Council

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2 Responses to “Sammamish Forum March 12”

  1. Mike Wilson on March 12th, 2014 6:36 pm

    Vote NO on the Lake Washington Bonds.

    Great schools? You have to be kidding! Are you familiar with the changes that have been put in place for the Common Core curriculum? If not, do your own research and prepare to be disgusted.

    Your child’s education is about to be severely downgraded by this untested curriculum.

    How much is the LWSD paying to implement Common Core? Untold millions for training, materials, testing, computer hardware, you name it. If they can pay for that, they don’t need any more money from the taxpayers.

    Don’t take my word for it, do your own research.

  2. John Galvin, Ph.D. on March 14th, 2014 9:03 am

    Often what is not said is the real message. Jack Barry praises Issaquah’s good leadership and lists all that has been achieved in the Issaquah Highlands. What he does not say, this is the real message, look at Sammamish, in 10 years of town center planning Sammamish has achieved absolutely nothing.

    Maybe something will happen soon. The Director of Community Development responsible for nine years of “nothing” is leaving Sammamish. Lets hope that something is beginning to change at Sammamish’s City Hall. For ten years now, our rundown, rural ghetto of a town center planning area has been ready for development into a core of urban services and public amenities that meet local needs. Maybe something is starting to change at City Hall. Town Center is .05% of Sammamish land. A town center will not change Sammamish’s. Sammamish will still be a bedroom community. But, maybe, we will see Ace Hardware again. Maybe, we will see office space for our local business community. Maybe we will see a few new restaurants. Maybe we will see gathering places for families. Maybe we will see housing choices for single adults. Maybe couples who have raised families here can downsize and age in place.

    For ten or more years the City Council, City Manager, and soon to depart Director of Community Development have talked and talked and talked about a town center, maybe now we will see some real progress. All depends on leadership.

    Thanks Mr. Barry for the message that went unsaid. I heard you loud and clear.

    For the record, I am one of many unfortunate town center property owners who have seen their property rights abused for 15 years. I have neighbors in their eighties who need to sell, but can’t sell their property and can’t develop their property. The City of Sammamish stole their property, condemned them to poverty. Speak up, defend your rights, get labeled a trouble maker. Freedom, democracy, human rights, our future as a community, as a nation needs trouble makers.

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