EDITOR’S NOTE: On Sunday, we extended an invitation for anyone – organization, business, private citizen, etc. – to submit for publication their pitch for why voters should go their way in the vote on whether Burien should annex most of the rest of North Highline. No negativity about the opposition or why the other view is wrong – just, why you believe your view is right. We have received six essays so far, the first four from Burien-annexation supporters, and the following is the first from someone who opposes it. We’re still accepting essays (that follow the rules) through Tuesday afternoon. Please send to firstname.lastname@example.org – thank you!
By Eduardo Brambila
Special to White Center Now
Dear undecided voters,
This annexation process has been very difficult to understand at times. As a small business owner here in White Center, I was extremely anxious to find out what all this meant. I have spent MONTHS researching, reading up on what annexation in the area means, asking folks from BOTH sides to describe to me how this WOULD AFFECT ME.
From the anti side, I heard a lot about taxes going up. Now, as a just-starting-out business.. of course extra taxes will make it tighter on my budget. I’m working on improving my shop’s appearance and upgrading equipment to provide better and more efficient services. The pro side mentions better representation at City Hall; that very much interests me.
But after some more thinking, I wanted to see how this would affect our community as a whole. And I must say, our community is filled with diversity, cultures, and very large economic gaps. My background is only part in the graphics business, I’ve actually dedicated quite a few years in public health and community organizing. From working with homeless folks to folks in recovery. Aside from me considering the factors in how it would affect my business, I really care about how it would affect those folks we provided services to.
With all (the) research I’ve done, I cannot see how Burien has the capacity to provide the much needed services White Center needs. It’s just not adding up. Many folks want to “kick out the drunks on the street,” which quite frankly doesn’t just happen overnight. PLUS, you have to consider where some of these folks would be going. If that means jail… you’re GOING to pay for that.
I’m for a stronger, more supportive community, and I just don’t believe being incorporated into Burien will provide that. I am NOT advocating for Seattle, let’s be clear. I’m for us staying as we are on the map, and work together as a community to revitalize this area. If Burien down the line can give us a better plan and MORE services, then hey.. maybe then. But right now it just doesn’t seem plausible. And from what I understand, they cannot force us into annexation (nor Burien – nor Seattle).
I love this area, with its quirks and faults… all in all. I’ve been in the area 10+ years and I want to see it improved, and that’s why I am voting AGAINST ANNEXATION and I urge you to do the same. Together we can we do better.