.

What this is about questions that are raised?

This is a blog against the park tax. It will explore how much the tax will cost, where the money will go, what has happened in other communities

Hey, I just got another letter from the nice widow from Nigeria that wants to send me all the money. Then Bill Gates is going to pay me to forward emails for him. They just want access to my bank account first. 

Would you fall for that? Most of us want to know what we're buying before we pay. With the park tax, we pay and, sometime later, maybe, learn what we’re bought. 

On the topic of parks, just what do you want?  Is this the same as what the rest of us want?  Over time I’ve heard:

Playing Fields

Community Center

YMCA

Trails

Community Gardens

Museum

BMX Track

Frisbee Golf Course

Dog Park 

What do the people of Bonney Lake want to have? Sadly, the answer is “We don’t know.”

That doesn’t stop the push to create a Metropolitan Park District and start taxing us.

Let’s  drive a stake through one claim the taxers like to make. That is the:  “You’re against parks!” yelp. No we’re not. What we do object to being taxed and not knowing where the money will go. Why not first find out what the taxpayers of the city want for parks, then pass a bond to fund that. Too logical? It is when you look at the list of potential projects (see above) those that believe that their pet project will be funded will support the tax. If enough believe then the tax will pass.

 The trick is to keep people believing and not asking too many questions. Here are some questions  that do need to be asked:

How much tax money will be raised?

What will be funded first and how much will it cost. (Factoid: a mile of trail runs over a million dollars)

How much will “administration” of this park district cost? (Factoid: Tacoma’s park district spends over 49% of its revenues on “administration”)

What’s it been for communities that embraced these park taxes? (Factoid: Pierce County has dropped their move for a park tax. The money wasn’t there.)

So, next, let’s look at how the tax numbers get added up. Otherwise we can just send that nice widdow in Nigeria some money.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Winona Jacobsen February 28, 2013 at 10:05 PM
Part 1] Grant, since you have been the chair of the Bonney Lake Planning Commission, you oversaw the discussion and vote on the Park Element of the city’s Comprehensive Plan. You read the citizen survey results expressing what the people wanted in and for their parks. You saw that their primary request was for trails, ball fields, a community center or YMCA, and a swimming pool. You sat in on the joint meetings with the Park Board to discuss the proposed plan and the survey results. And ultimately, the Planning Commission recommended approval of the Park Plan to the City Council. Since I know you have been an intelligent and responsible chairperson, I am at a loss understanding how you are “in the dark” about what projects may be developed by a Metropolitan Park District. You make the statement, “Let’s drive a stake through one claim the taxers like to make. That is: “You’re against parks!”. First of all, I am certainly not a “taxer”. As a retiree on a fixed income, the last thing I want or can afford is a needless tax. As a resident for the past 40 years, I have seen very clearly that our parks have not grown with the population, and our open space has diminished considerably with development.
Winona Jacobsen February 28, 2013 at 10:10 PM
Part 2] . Secondly, I have not seen any commentary made by the yesmpd.com coalition that stated that you or anyone else is against parks. As the driving force behind the building of the dog park, you have proven yourself to be in favor of creating needed recreational amenities in our community. Perhaps the greatest difference is that we have different ideas about whether or not the public has a right to choose. It appears that one of the constant themes that I continue to see by you and others is putting the proverbial cart before the horse. By state law, you cannot have a definite plan and budget without having first created the means to do so; voting in a Metropolitan Park District. So, Factoid #1, you cannot accurately state the cost of a mile of trail until it has been determined the type of trail to be built and put it out for bid. The same is true for ball fields or any other capital improvement. Factoid #2; why continue to compare Bonney Lake’s 17,000 population to Tacoma’s more than 200,000? Why not choose a community that is closer to our size like Centralia, Aberdeen, Arlington, or Covington? All of them have more park lands than Bonney Lake. Factoid #3; As if the city of Tacoma isn’t large enough, now you want to compare us to the entire county? Check out the Pierce County 2013 budget that specifies their funding for parks http://www.co.pierce.wa.us/archives/37/2013%20BIB.pdf . Vote YES for Bonney Lake's MPD.
MB March 01, 2013 at 03:49 AM
Grant - someone who is an educator at the High School should be accustomed to using facts to aid in teaching others not hearsay. Just because you believe something to be true, no matter how strongly, does not mean it is a fact. You have clearly been drinking the koolaid offered up by the opposition to the MPD. It is very easy to dump every problem Bonney Lake, Pierce County, Washington State, and the country may have regarding taxes into the argument regarding the formation of a Metropolitan Park District here in Bonney Lake. It's also easy to spin half truths, misrepresentations and wrong information into mud and then cast it at your opposition. Unfortunately, when you can't support your claims with facts, your representations have been shown to be false, and non-MPD tax concerns are not germane to the discussion you only look foolish. Maybe its about time you and the other four families backing the opposition to the MPD stop doing the bidding of one council member. Holding court on a regular basis at his place of business is no secret and only serves his keen interests. By having others doing his bidding while he reaps the rewards from parks in this city is living the life of a hypocrite
Tami Cutler March 09, 2013 at 05:58 AM
Definitions of "factoid" as found by binging the term "factoid definition": 1.unreliable information: something that may not be true but is widely accepted as true because it is repeatedly quoted, especially in the media 2.single fact: a small and often unimportant bit of information 1. A piece of unverified or inaccurate information that is presented in the press as factual, often as part of a publicity effort, and that is then accepted as true because of frequent repetition A factoid is a questionable or spurious (unverified, false, or fabricated) statement presented as a fact, but without supporting evidence. The word can also be used to describe a particularly insignificant or novel fact, in the absence of much relevant context. The word is defined by the Compact Oxford English Dictionary as "an item of unreliable information that is repeated so often that it becomes accepted as fact". Factoid was coined by Norman Mailer in his biography of Marilyn Monroe. Mailer described a factoid as "facts which have no existence before appearing in a magazine or newspaper", and created the word by combining the word fact and the ending -oid to mean "similar but not the same". The Washington Times described Mailer's new word as referring to "something that looks like a fact, could be a fact, but in fact is not a fact". Factoids may give rise to, or arise from, common misconceptions and urban legends. Enough said. You get the point.

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