Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Primary Election

Does anyone think that this is a story?

Nothing really noteworthy in the results that I have seen so far. It looks like the Port of Bremerton is going to have a change. There was an incumbent, Mary Ann Huntington, who lost the primary but will still be on the ballot for the general. The challenger, Larry Stokes, wound up taking 56% of the vote in a three-way race. There was a tax increase levied by the Port that was unpopular to say the least and the current commissioner will lose her job over it.

Here's the story in the Kitsap Sun

Kitsap SEED is going to be in the hot seat, I would be surprised if the Port of Bremerton took on any other new projects.

Please post comments as to other primary results that others may find interesting.


Heatho said...

Well... up here in SnoCo we are 100% Mail-in... Which I dislike 100%. Take me to a Poll!

They told us voter turnout would be more with mail-in. We are at 20% turnout right now. Maybe it will go up as some people mailed them on Tuesday (Myself included). There wasn't anything exciting on the ballot anyway, but I'm looking forward to the Sheriff race, could be interesting.

Micajah said...

The important part of the Mary Ann Huntington story at the Port of Bremerton is not just the fact that the port's property tax was increased by 150 percent.

Note this part of the article in the Kitsap Sun:

"Much of the discussion leading up to Tuesday's election focused on the commissioners' decision in 2006 to levy an additional 45 cents per $1,000 in assessed value to for property owners within the port district. The port held the required public meetings and ran the required legal notices in the Kitsap Sun, but the tax increase escaped notice by local newspapers and the general public.

"Residents within the port district could have forced an election on the matter, but the deadline passed without an effort."

Read RCW 53.36.100. The voters had 90 days after publication of the one legal notice to gather signatures on a petition and force the tax to the ballot during the primary election in 2006.

Since the port commissioners stayed quiet -- even after the Sun erroneously reported that they were still merely in the planning stages and still just considering their various financing options -- no petition drive was mounted.

Look at what happened this year down in Clark County, where the Port of Vancouver didn't keep their intent to levy such a tax out of the public's eye. A petition put it on the ballot, and it was overwhelmingly rejected.

The Port of Bremerton commissioners cleverly avoided having their big tax increase put on the ballot.

Even now, the port doesn't acknowledge on its web site that the tax could have been placed on the ballot, if only the voters had known in time.

It's a lesson for the voters and tax payers within the Port of Bremerton's boundaries which ought to cause Huntington's defeat in November.

It's also a lesson for all Washington voters living within any port's boundaries. Pay close attention to any hint that such a new tax might be coming -- you may only get one "legal notice" in the classified ads to let you know.