The past 24 hours in Seattle and Olympia will have produced three significant rounds of long-term, unauthorized, and blatantly illegal homelessness camps.
Olympia – Deschutes Promenade
Seattle – Ballard Commons Park (City)
Seattle – Broadview Thomson K-8 (owned by the public school).
There’s something unsaid about cities like Seattle and Olympia that manage to allow roaming instead of preventing it: cleanup costs. With existing policies, the cost returns to taxpayers. If a business piled up trash, didn’t pay for trash pickup, and chronically left trash all around the property, the cities of Olympia and Seattle would instantly impose fines and liens on the property owner. But that won’t happen with unauthorized homeless camps.
If a business owner in either city breaks any part of a long list of city codes, a citation and a fine will be imposed. suite of chicks. But that won’t happen with unauthorized homeless camps.
These are further examples of how elected politicians in Seattle and Olympia like to impose tough rules on business owners ($ 15 – or more – minimum wage, paid sick leave, paid family leave, extended hours, etc. .) but there are no such claims for liability when it comes to homelessness.
If you choose to be (which many of them do) or find yourself homeless, the rules just don’t apply to you in those jurisdictions. Meanwhile, try to play by the rules – as a business owner – and it just gets more complicated with a never-ending list of rules and requirements to follow. Political progressives in Seattle (and Olympia) like to quote or complain about the wealth gap or the gender pay gap, but these political progressives have produced an accountability gap. And there doesn’t seem to be any thought to fill that gap in places like Seattle or Olympia.
Political reactionaries who oppose what I write here about the relative level of accountability between elected officials, business owners and the homeless will call me heartless or perhaps something more inflammatory. If this is your impulse in reading my thoughts, my question to you is: why should economic resources (or lack thereof) predict who should and should not follow “the rules”? Rich or poor, we know what’s right and wrong as adults.
There is no excuse for piling up trash, homeless or not. Business owner or not. The people of Seattle proudly claim to be “environmentalists,” protecting and advocating for the environment while allowing city parks, even school properties next to a wetland (Bitter Lake), any greenbelt, or overpass. highway to become a real dumping ground. It is not ecological. What is the carbon footprint of those clean-up crews (trucks carrying garbage) from Deschutes Parkway to Ballard Commons and Bitter Lake Park (aka the Seattle Public Schools property at Broadview Thomson)? Now multiply that carbon footprint for the many unauthorized camp sweeps that politicians only tackle after conditions (criminal, sanitary, or both) get out of hand.
Governor Jay Inslee is demanding all programs, precautions and taxes under the sun to protect the environment from fossil fuel pollution (aka climate change), yet this champion of environmental protection continues to be silent when ‘it is about the ecological degradation that it overlooks. his governor’s residence on Deschutes Parkway in Seattle. It is more of duplicity on the part of Governor Inslee and the respective elected officials of Olympia and Seattle. They only care about the environment when it is politically appropriate. Always stand up for the protection of the environment or be honest with us and tell us that your protection of the environment is strictly limited to raising taxes for your pet projects.