1. The city council's government performance and finance commitee will take up Mayor Mike McGinn's supplemental budget proposal today, including a proposal by McGinn to spend $300,000 studying a new rail line along Eastlake and another $365,000 studying a new ship canal crossing for light rail as part of the Seattle Department of Transportation's proposed $13 million supplemental budget.
Critics say the proposed new rail lines are expensive and redundant with existing transit; proponents like McGinn say they'll form the backbone of a citywide system that can't be built by Sound Transit alone.
The committee meets in council chambers at 9:30am.
2. Bellevue politics. As always fascinating (to Fizz): Vandana Slatter, a pharmacist, former NARAL Pro-Choice Washington Federation Board member, and onetime member of the state pharmacy board, is running against conservatic bloc Bellevue city council member Don Davidson.
Slatter, an Indian-American woman who was born in Canada, is in a tough (and interesting) position: Running against conservative council member Conrad Lee would have pitted her against a fellow immigrant and Asian-American, while running agains conservative bloc ringleader, council member Kevin Wallace, would have meant opposing a popular incumbent and Bellevue development scion with money to burn.
But: Running against Davidson also means going up against Davidson's other challenger, Bellevue parks commission Lynne Robinson, another progressive woman who has shown a knack for raising money. So far, Slatter has raised just over $36,000 to Robinson's $23,000.
3. It was true (and the worst kept secret in Olympia): State Rep. Dave Upthegrove (D-33, Des Moines) has officially announced he's running to replace retiring King County Council member Julia Patterson, whose seat in the state house he took over when Patterson resigned to run for county council in 2001. (He was also a part time aide for Patterson three years ago.)
In a statement endorsing Upthegrove, Patterson, also a Democrat, said, "It’s hard to imagine someone in South County who has a better understanding of local government or has a tighter connection to this community."
Upthegrove, like his senate colleague Ed Murray, who's running for mayor, has two weeks to raise money until the special legislative session begins on May 13; legislators are barred from raising campaign funds while the legislature is in session.
4. And from our PubliCalendar:
Civic Conversation over Cocktails
Seattle Channel host Brian Callanan, Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes, OneAmerica Executive Director Rich Stolz, Crosscut Editor in Chief Mary Bruno and PubliCola's own Founder & Editor Josh Feit will tackle issues from ranging from higher education funding to immigration reform to changes at the Seattle Police Department—and any other civic issues you want to discuss.
CityClub Civic Cocktail, Wed, May 1, 6pm (doors open at 5:30pm), The Palace Ballroom, 2100 5th Ave, CityClub & Crosscut Members - $10, General Public - $12, Door - $15.
5. Legislation that would consolidate collection of business and occupation (B&O) taxes at the state level—a longtime goal of the conservative Association of Washington Business—appears dead this year, although the AWB is likely to push for a similar bill in upcoming legislative sessions.
Cities, including Seattle, argued that the consolidation would allow businesses to dodge B&O taxes, costing Seattle alone up to $43 million a year.