Afternoon Jolt: Everyone's a Loser Today

By Afternoon Jolt September 27, 2010

With bad budget news and drama galore at city hall, Seattle is full of losers today. Here's our list:

1. Mayor Mike McGinn. Perhaps today's biggest loser. At two budget meetings today, McGinn had to announce some tragic budget cuts, including cuts to SPD and community centers and libraries. And, uh, (thanks Pete Holmes, Sally Bagshaw, and Mike O'Brien ... O'Brien too?!?) this hasn't exactly been McGinn's day.

2. The Seattle City Council. They'll actually have to grapple with their own take on McGinn's extensive budget cuts.

3. Seattle residents. As Erica reports, the McGinn budget details five percent cuts to the human services department and funding cuts for education programs and library programs.

4. City Employees. The McGinn budget would lay off 214 employees, plus it mandates a COLA freeze for nonunion employees, and a freeze on pay raises for union employees.

5. Seattle Neighborhoods. See McGinn's latest cuts to SPD and the partial and complete closing of several neighborhood service centers and community centers.

6. Vulnerable Seattleites. Don't forget: Those five percent human services cuts are also compounded with KC Exec Dow Constantine's announcement today that human services were going to be completely cut from the County budget, including the County's support for domestic abuse and sexual assault victims.

7. People Who Like to Read Books. Who wants to live in a city where they're closing down the libraries?

8. Weekend Boaters. The budget also reduces staff at boating centers in Green Lake and Mount Vernon.

9. Little kids. The McGinn budget means the closure of seven wading pools, and the partial closure of 10 more.

10. Maybe there's one winner, although he's really just a loser-lite.

With all the focus on the firestorm(s) at City Hall today, King County Executive Dow Constantine's own dismal announcement kinda slipped under the radar.

Like McGinn, Constantine had to announce some serious cuts today, the starkest of which come from the social services provided by the County—including eliminating services for domestic abuse and sexual assault victims.

But given all the high drama at city hall, no one's paying much attention to Constantine.
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