September 28, 1998
Mayor, council need support
(A response to Marguerite Ensley)
We support your concern for Carnation and, as newcomers to the immediate area, were not impressed with now the ex-mayor, Mr. Stein, right from the start. We were objective as could be due to the fact we knew nothing of or about him or the rest of the city leaders. We were totally open and had no opinions either way.
For example, the first several council meetings we attended, we didn't even know what the mayor looked like much less how he conducted a meeting because he was a no-show. Then when he did show up at the January 6, '98 meeting, it was to be sworn in as the re-elected mayor.
Now he may have had legitimate reason(s) for not having been present til then. However, as we recall, nothing was ever said, leaving the impression it was simply his choice not to be present.
The whole scenerio struck us as being rather odd but we reserved judgement until experiencing Mr. Stein in action, conducting meetings and business.
After this first meeting, our observation and feeling was that Mr. Stein brought a definite negative edge to the attending public in leading the council meeting. He never seemed to give a straight answer and seemed to want to run things his way yet delegated virtually everything, giving the feeling of a non-participating dictatorship. We came out of this meeting with a rather shocked reaction, not wanting to believe what we had just experienced, hoping Mr. Stein was just having a bad day. After all, he had been re-elected!
Unfortunately, this was not the case. We had to force ourselves to continue attending council meetings, not making all of them because we actually dreaded his leadership inabilities.
Actually, we had planned to attend council meetings in Fall City and Duvall to obtain an idea of their way of conducting business. Next thing we knew, Mr. Stein, once again a no-show, impersonally resigned through a statement read by the city attorney on March 3, '98 just prior to or at the start of the regular council meeting and hasn't shown his face since, obviously choosing not to be present.
Frankly, we are joyous for these events and, although an explanation of these actions would be nice, would one really serve a positive purpose?
We don't believe so. Let's move forward and not backward. Granted, we can hopefully learn from the past occurances so as to avoid repeating them and perhaps we ought to be more cautious about who is re-elected. So goes to the ol' saying: "Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me!"
After all, Mr. Stein did leave us at least one good thing: our new interim mayor, Dave Hunter. Based on what we have observed since Mayor Hunter has had this responsibility, he is sincere, honest, respectful and understanding, to mention a few of the positives.
This is our fresh start. Although everyone may not always be in agreement, we feel he and the current council will do their utmost for the City of Carnation and its people. We plan to support them whenever and wherever possible.
Ms. Ensley, you are right, "If it didn't matter so much, I (we) wouldn't be writing."
However, we would like to see you, Ms. Ensley, attend the council meetings and express your opinions as well as receive answers to questions and concerns such as those included in your Letter to the Editor.
Your presence and input could prove valuable. Mayor Hunter, and councilmembers do listen to the people's input and seem to want to hear what we have to say. We may not always want to hear the answer or response given, but at least a person in attendance would have the opportunity to be heard directly and obtain a response.
The regular council meetings are every first and third Tuesday of the month at 7 p.m. at City Hall. Workshop meetings and special meetings are scheduled and announced at the regular meetings.
Mr. and Mrs. Gary Atkins, Carnation