Northwest NEWS

November 18, 2002

Editorial

It is now time to stand up for home and hearth

A line in the sand. As many concerned citizens have done when faced with being trampled by a heartless government, it is now time to stand up for home and hearth and cross that line.
   Ron Sims said he prefers a sewage treatment site located about 1-1/2 miles from downtown Woodinville.
   The so-called Route 9 site is upwind of Woodinville, meaning sewage odor will blow towards the city and, adding insult, it will be built over a pure water aquifer and next to a salmon stream.
   The proposed site begins just north of 240th and continues north for one mile along the east side of Route 9 approximately to 220th (before Maltby Road). As a reference, the Grange Hall is near the proposed center of the 106 acre Brightwater sewage treatment plant.
   But that's not all. Monstrous tunnels will be needed for the flow sewage from King County to Brightwater and then another tunnel to take the treated liquid to Edmonds so that it can be released into Puget Sound. There will also be a tunnel in the Kenmore area to Lake Washington.
   These tunnels aren't puny corrugated drainage pipe, they are large enough to drive a car through. Huge tunnels are required because Brightwater will be processing about 36 million gallons of sewage every day. And right now, there are homes, roads, churches and the things you call your neighborhood located where the tunnels will be placed.
   Woodinville will be changed by the presence of a sewage treatment plant. So will Bothell, Hollywood Hills, Sammamish Valley, Maltby, Crystal Lake and every other community associated with this area.
   Local businesses will be negatively effected. Tourism will suffer and real estate values will decline. The word sewage‚ will forevermore be linked with Woodinville.
   Think not? Do you link Microsoft with Redmond? Everett with Boeing, Leavenworth with Bavarian shops and Hanford with nuclear waste? Believe me, people will say, "Woodinville and sewage."
   You will smell sewage during summer barbecues, waiting for school buses and standing outside of church. And whether you want to or not, you will constantly be wondering, "Is my drinking water safe?"
   Remember that line in the sand. Despite the feeling of a school yard bully (Sims) beating up a little kid (us), there's some recourse. Each of us can do something.
   1. Write a flood of letters to the Woodinville City Council, King County Council, Snohomish County Council and to Ron Sims telling them you do not want Brightwater.
   2. Write letters to all the newspapers, TV and radio stations expressing your opinion.
   3. Whenever you smell Stock Pot Soup call the Puget Sound Clean AirAgency at 800-552-3565 and tell them you smell odor in the air. They keep records of complaints and it creates a precedence for how Woodinville reacts to odor. For comparison, note how small the Stock Pot Soup facility is in relation to the magnitude of Brightwater. And if you have seen hot air balloons drifting from north to south, sewage odor will follow the same air currents.
   4. There are several neighborhood groups organized to fight Brightwater. Contact them and add your support.
   5. Read the Environmental Impact Statement Summary that you received in the mail and attend the four public hearings: Dec. 3; Hollywood Schoolhouse, Dec. 4; University of Washington, Bothell Campus, Building UW2, 18115 Campus Way N.E., Dec. 10; Edmonds Floral Conference Center, 201 Fourth Ave. N., Dec. 11; Northshore Utility District, 6830 N.E. 185th St., Kenmore. Each runs from 5 to 8 p.m.
   My family moved to Woodinville for a better life, safe neighborhoods, good schools, clean air and water and the opportunity to share those values with our future generations. Idealistic? Maybe.
   But I'd rather be idealistic than have to live with a sewage mess.
   Remember, if you are passive about this issue, look forward to having a sewage treatment plant.
   Bill Stankus, Woodinville