“The Olympian” endorsement meaningless
Word has trickled down to me that The Olympian editorial board will soon endorse Timberland Regional Library’s efforts to increase property taxes. That shouldn’t come as any surprise.
The Olympian has endorsed every local government tax increase that comes down the pike. I can’t recall, once, in the past 30 years where The Olympian has not endorsed a local government tax increase.
Here’s the way it works. Every Wednesday the paper holds an editorial board meeting, where local government officials make their case for more taxes. These officials sit at the meeting, wringing their hands, and telling the editorial board what will happen if voters don’t approve this tax increase, this special levy, this levy lid lift.
And Editorial Page Editor Mike Oakland, and Publisher John Winn Miller, along with the other members of the editorial board, express disbelief that the voters of Thurston County would be so callus as to not want better schools, not want increased fire protection, more bus service or improved libraries.
But they never ask the hard questions of these local government types. How did Intercity Transit go from a $20 million dollar surplus to a budget crisis, in just three years? Why did the library system hire 80 new employees in the last three years if they didn’t have the money to keep them? How come fire costs in the Lacey Fire District have gone up, as fire incidents have decreased?
Oakland, Miller and the rest of The Olympian editorial board never asks those tough questions, never force these local government officials to explain their actions, and never look out for the taxpayers of Thurston County.
That’s why The Olympian’s pending endorsement of the Timberland Regional Library System’s levy lid lift means nothing.