Mayor’s Message: how Fircrest voted on the park bond

The voters of Fircrest spoke loud and clear on April 23 when they overwhelmingly approved the park bond to pay for a new pool and community center as well as other park improvements.

In case you haven’t seen them, here are the final numbers from the special election:

YES     1,716   79.15%

NO          452   20.85%

The final vote tally was 2,168, which was far ahead of the minimum 1,418 needed in order for the results to be validated. And a final piece of trivia: 681 ballots were submitted via the Pierce County ballot drop box at Fircrest City Hall.

As they say on TV, “but wait, there’s more!” We have promised to continue seeking grants and donations to fund this project, and I’m excited to let you know about a big achievement. The three-member delegation that represents us in the Legislature — Rep. Mari Leavitt, Rep. Christine Kilduff, and Sen. Steve O’Ban of the 28th Legislative District — helped us get a $1 million grant from the state. That’s the Legislature’s second grant for this project, and it brings the state’s total contribution to $1.75 million. We are very grateful for the strong support from our legislators, and I hope you will take a moment to share your appreciation when you see the them in the community.

On behalf of the City of Fircrest, I want to thank a number of people who contributed their time and talent to get us to this point.

First, I thank the residents who volunteered to serve on the project steering committee. This group met throughout 2018 and into mid 2019 to do a deep dive into every aspect of the pool and community center, including building design, layout, landscaping, furnishings, and the business plan. They represented a cross-section of the community, including families, seniors, the Fircrest Soccer Club, the Kiwanis Club, and more.

Second, I thank our staff and City Council members. City Manager Scott Pingel and Parks and Recreation Director Jeff Grover served as the points of contact with ARC Architects and the steering committee. Councilmember Brett Wittner served as chairman of the steering committee, and Councilmembers Blake Surina and Shannon Reynolds helped represent the Council during those in-depth discussions.

This project began five years ago when we updated the City of Fircrest’s Parks, Recreation and Open Space Plan. Since then, a lot of people have put a lot of work into developing and designing a new pool and community center that will serve future generations. Thanks to overwhelming support from voters, we are putting that plan into action.

How Fircrest voted in the 2018 General Election

It’s always interesting to see how Fircrest voters feel about candidates and issues on the ballot. The November 2018 General Election saw a huge turnout, of course. Here are select results from the four precincts serving Fircrest (28-535 through 28-538):

 

U.S. Senate                  Cantwell (D)    Hutchinson (R)

Total                            2,163               1,346

 

U.S. House                  Heck (D)          Brumbles (R)

Total                            2,369               1,096

 

State House                Leavitt (D)       Muri (R)

Total                            2,023               1,460

 

County Prosecutor      Lindquist         Robnett

Total                            1,107               2,279

 

I-1631, pollution         Yes                  No

Total                            1,590               1,904

 

I-1639, firearms          Yes                  No

Total                            2,279               1,222

Why can’t we check out items from that awesome library in UP?

Every few months, someone posts some variation of the following questions on Facebook: “Why can’t we use the library in UP? Why does Fircrest reimburse the cost of a Tacoma library card, but not a Pierce County library card?”

My wife and I are professional writers. We both grew up going to local libraries in our hometowns. This is an issue that’s near and dear to my heart, so I’ve spent a lot of time talking to people about it. Here’s a primer that should help explain why things are the way they are in Fircrest:

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How Fircrest voted in 2016

I think it’s interesting to look at election results in Fircrest’s four voting precincts (28-535 through 538). The data provides a snapshot of what we think (at least, relative to the choices in any given year). So here’s a quick look at some select races from 2016:

President:

Clinton/Kaine (D)            2,166

Trump/Pence (R)              1,234

Governor:

Inslee (D)                        2,117

Bryant (R)                      1,633

28th Legislative District Senator:

O’Ban (R)                        1,823

Peloquin (D)                   1,807

28th Legislative District Representative, position 1:

Muri (R)                        1,699

Leavitt (D)                    1,906

28th Legislative District Representative, position 2:

Kilduff (D                      2,176

Wagemann (R)            1,426

County Executive

Talbert (D)                  1,942

Dammeier (R)            1,590

County Council District 4

Ladenburg (D)             2,094

Burns (I)                        1,286