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Friday, June 6, 2008

Sims Responds to Criminal Justice Dept; Phillips Responds to Sims

posted by on June 6 at 14:30 PM

Posted by news intern Chris Kissel

As Erica noted, I went downtown yesterday to catch Ron Sims’ press conference, held in response to announcements by County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg and Sheriff Sue Rahr detailing their own responses to $68 million in King County budget cuts.

After spending half of his prepared comments giving props to Satterberg, Sims acknowledged the budget hole, which will see cuts of up to one-third of the county’s budgets for public health and human services - Sims voiced particular concern for domestic protection orders - and blamed the deficit on “a structural gap.” He said his office is working with the prosecutor’s office and state government to find a way out that won’t include an increase in the property tax levy, adding that “solving this problem is my top priority.”

He added that $130 million in cuts made a few years have left county agencies lean as it is. “We’ve cut away the easy stuff. Now we’re talking about the heart and soul of government,” he said.

After the meeting, King County Budget Committee Chair Larry Phillips stood outside in the rain with reporters and berated Sims for not dealing with the problem when he had the chance. “This should have been headed off years ago. It could have been avoided, unfortunately it wasn’t,” he said.

Sims and Phillips agreed that the public needs to be made aware of the severity of the crisis and that these budget problems are likely to cause problems the next few years.

RSS icon Comments


how much of this problem could be solved via annexations of unincorporated non-rural areas of king county?

Posted by kinkos | June 6, 2008 2:37 PM

Larry should push for the Council to be granted the power to approve, modify or reject spending proposals. Oh wait... they've had that power for decades.

Posted by Lionel Hutz | June 6, 2008 2:41 PM

oh...the county doesn't have enough money to pay for needed programs.

uh, then maybe you need to raise taxes a LITTLE bit.

Posted by michael strangeways | June 6, 2008 3:09 PM

Why not get rid of non-low-income-retiree tax exemptions for corporations instead?

Lots of big giant holes in the tax bucket that should have been removed a LOOONG time ago.

And we could have county council and exec and their staff ride the bus or bike to work, to reduce health care costs and global warming at the same time, while SAVING MONEY!

Posted by Will in Seattle | June 6, 2008 3:31 PM

@4 - But then the County's big new parking garage would be empty and not generating any revenue... thus compounding the budget problem. Feel free to count the ironies in that statement.

Posted by Lionel Hutz | June 6, 2008 3:40 PM

We could keep rent it out at $10 a pop to non-County drivers .... or charge SUVs TWICE the parking rate based on mpg and size.

Posted by Will in Seattle | June 6, 2008 3:48 PM

@6 - Will, as usual, you missed my point. Let us both end this charade and never speak of it again. I am embarassed enough for the both of us.

Posted by Lionel Hutz | June 6, 2008 6:53 PM

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