Seattle’s pension plan has been mismanaged by millions, and city government is on an exorbitant, uncontrolled tax and spending spree. Worker head taxes, $12-million-per-mile bike lanes, multilane downtown streets reduced to one traffic lane and hundreds of neighborhood parking spaces eliminated all are policies harmful to businesses, deterring worker hiring and continuing the rout of our middle class. Seattle is gradually excluding everyone except the wealthy and destitute, driven out by reckless policies compounded by abdication of oversight.
For 100 years until 1992, two independently elected city officers, the treasurer and comptroller, had primary responsibility for finance department oversight, providing critical checks and balances on city finances absent today. The comptroller directed city finances, conducted independent audits and served as city clerk; the treasurer oversaw all city moneys including revenue, expenditures, pensions and investments.
Guarding over city finances, they publicly exposed and reigned in reckless, wasteful management, spending and debt, protecting us from detrimental taxation.
Seeking efficiency, these positions were shortsightedly abolished, replaced by institutionalized nonaccountability, indifferent to squandering funds, completely disregarding economic consequences of regressive taxation.
For Seattle’s economic well-being, reinstating these two independent offices will reimpose disciplined financial accountability to our city.
Herb Krohn, Seattle