Morning Fizz

"This is One of Those Embarrassing Mistakes That Makes You Want to Bury Your Head."

By Morning Fizz May 12, 2010

1. A search committee has settled on three finalists, including Interim SPD Chief John Diaz, to replace former Chief Gil Kerlikowske.

Mayor Mike McGinn will pick the new chief next month. Here's the Seattle Times report.

2. The King County Council is meeting this morning with representatives from the labor unions representing 10,000 county employees at the downtown King County Labor Temple.

The "labor summit," an annual event, has the potential for fireworks; council Republicans, including Kathy Lambert, have suggested that they won't sign off on King County Executive Dow Constantine's sales tax proposal unless they get an agreement from labor to reduce their costs to help close an anticipated $60 million deficit in 2011.

3. Late last week, insider D.C. paper The National Journal reported that a letter U.S. Rep Jay Inslee (D-WA, 1) sent to colleagues in support of an FCC proposal to regulate broadband companies was actually written by a lobbyist.

The National Journal said that the "metadata"—the electronic signature you can find by clicking on "properties" in Microsoft Word—showed that a lobbyist for Free Press, a liberal Internet advocacy group funded by George Soros, wrote Inslee's letter.

This week, however, Inslee's office tells another insider D.C. paper, The Hill, that the letter was written by Inslee's office. (They also report that the Journal "never reached out"  to Inslee's office for their report.)

Inslee spokesman Robert Kellar says the Free Press lobbyist's name, Ben Scott, appeared in the letter's metadata because, "the text of the letter was simply created, by Inslee staff, on a word document that had originally come from Free Press."

Kellar tells PubliCola:
"Making the jump from a meta-tag to authorship is a huge leap, and in this case not even close to the truth. Here is what went down: On Friday, we were scrambling to put together a letter in support of the FCC. As part of that effort we were reviewing old talking points that we had prepared, old op-ed’s, statements, and we reached out to folks to solicit their thoughts. Honestly, this is one of those embarrassing mistakes that makes you want to bury your head. In our haste we typed over a word document with someone else’s meta tag.  There is no plot and we created the letter."

Okay tech nerds of Seattle, believable?

4. Hugh Sisley, the notorious landlord who was hit with a $75,000 fine in 2007 for failing to maintain housing he owns in Roosevelt, sued the city late last week for "civil rights violations" over city inspections of his properties. The city is considering a mandatory rental-housing inspection program (which Mayor McGinn supports) this afternoon; we'll have more details about Sisley's suit later today.

5. The city's Department of Transportation (SDOT) sent PubliCola a copy of the state's analysis of the impact a "road diet" (essentially, narrowing the street and adding bike lanes) would have on Nickerson Street between Ballard and Fremont. Businesses in the area oppose the move because they say it would result in unacceptable traffic levels.

The state's analysis shows that the traffic impact of narrowing Nickerson and adding bike lanes would be "negligible," ranging from a decrease of ten vehicles at rush hour to an increase of 50. The study also found that the construction of the north portal of the Alaskan Way deep-bore tunnel would result in "little change in peak period traffic volumes on Nickerson Street."

Show Comments