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VOTE411 Voter Guide

Snohomish City Of Stanwood Council Position #2

The City Council is the legislative body for the City. The Council adopts local laws (ordinances) to secure the safety and assist the well-being of the city residents, the city's physical environment and amenities, and the city economy. The Council is responsible for approving financial expenditures and adopting the city budget as well as establishing policies and regulations in order to guide the city's future. The elected mayor serves as chief administrative officer for the city.
  • Candidate picture

    Steve Shepro (NP) Retired

  • Dianne Warsinske White (NP)

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Biographical Information

What are the issues surrounding your city/town's infrastucture?

How do you think your city/town could best respond to homelessness?

What is your commitment to senior citizens?

How do you think your city/town should approach legal and illegal immigration issues?

What are other major issues facing your city or town?

Of those listed above, which one is the most urgent?

What methods will you use to work with the mayor (if you have an elected mayor) or the city manager or administrator(if you have an chief administrator hired by the council)?

Phone (360) 510-8022
Town where you live Stanwood, WA
Experience (300 characters max) Founding member of Stanwood Stewards, a group dedicated to addressing issues relevant to our community. Volunteer with Providence Hospice & Homecare. Volunteer Stanwood/Camano YMCA. 40 years in the printing & publishing fields. Analyst with Los Angeles Times. Author best seller "Getting It Printed".
Nearly all of Downtown Stanwood resides in a floodplain. Flood insurance rates are overwhelming businesses and home owners. Solutions are in the works. These efforts must be given our utmost attention. In the meantime, there has been a dramatic shift in development away from the Downtown to Stanwood's Uptown area. Plans are being made to move the City Hall and police station out of the floodplain. This follows development of a new YMCA and High School to Uptown. Is Stanwood's future going to move up the hill? Will downtown survive this migration? Other major issues revolve around the future of our City parks. Heritage Park resides in the floodplain and needs to be refurbished. Two new parks are proposed for the shoreline of Port Susan Bay. How will we pay for these? Stanwood is also dealing with increased traffic on Hwy 532 as the population grows at above average rates. Creative and thoughtful planning is needed to deal with these issues.
Stanwood is fortunate to have a smaller homeless issue than many other cities. However, we are the only city in our area whose City Council does not have a Social Services Committee. I will propose the immediate formation of such a committee. I will encourage the City to take on a broader role in addressing homelessness and other growing social issues. We are also fortunate to be home to the Stanwood Camano Community Resources Foundation. They deserve greater support from our City. Several Stanwood churches and the Stanwood Camano Food Bank are also providing food and services to the homeless. More can be done to help these organizations. All of the candidates running for Snohomish County Council have made strong statements regarding their support for homeless outreach. The Stanwood City Council and the County Council can form an active partnership to better assist people in need.
Being a senior citizen myself, I have some very clear insight into many of the issues the senior community is facing. I have also worked as a volunteer for Providence Hospice and Homecare. This work has taken me to hundreds of homes and apartments in the senior communities around Snohomish County. I am struck by how determined these folks are to remain independent and vibrant. Most of them only need occasional assistance to maintain their independence. The City of Stanwood can help by making walking routes safer, by encouraging better public transportation and offering assistance to our locally based senior service organizations. We can also help make interactions between City government and senior citizens more accessible. Let's invite various senior groups to attend Council meetings. Seniors have a tremendous amount to offer our City. Let's tap into this asset.
I am an advocate for legal immigration. I embrace those who enrich our community with the cultures they bring from their native lands. We are a better place for what they have offered us. While Stanwood does not have a particular policy on immigration, I support Snohomish County's approach to this issue.
1) Responsible economic growth: The Growth Management Act is requiring Stanwood to add a considerable number of housing units to our City. Let's make sure it is done responsibly. 2) Commercial and industrial development must also be done in a manner that enhances our lives and grows tax revenues at the same time. 3) The formation of a Parks and Recreation District: An eleven million dollar bond issue may be in our future. It would be used to refurbish existing parks and build two new parks. 4) Traffic on Hwy 532: As the population on Camano Island grows, the pressures on our main thoroughfare continue to grow. 5) Funding for quality police and fire services: Our City budget is being stretched to fulfill the needs of these services.
Commercial and Industrial development must be done in a manner that enhances our lives and grows tax revenues at the same time. There is no way current revenues will keep up with the financial demands of current service levels. New sources of revenues will need to be found. Ideally, this will happen through the right kind of economic growth. Policies that will enhance the revitalization of the Downtown core are desperately needed. I will urge the formation of a "targeted business recruitment program". This style of recruitment is affordable and effective for cities of our size. We cannot rely on the "do nothing, or shotgun" approach, where we wait for potential new businesses to "walk in the door". We need to identify the types of businesses that will add value and meet the needs of our citizens.
Stanwood has both a Mayor and City Administrator. I have found them both to be exceedingly approachable. We are a small enough town to allow for easy engagement with our City government. I have been openly invited to attend Community Development meetings with the Mayor and City Administrator in attendance. I have confidence that this open forum will continue to be available. I also know that our City Council members maintain easy access to all City staff. I plan to take full advantage of this access. My first preference will be through the use of email, as I believe a written and open record of communications is desirable. I will also foster the formation of a Community Engagement Plan. Such a plan will build direct lines of communication between City staff, elected officials and citizens. We can build on this platform by using social media and a City Council based website. I want the City Council to be more available in open forums and discussion groups.

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