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Tacoma Legislators - Missing in (in)Action

by panachronic
on 2/20/2010 @ 3:23am
The Seattle Times today tells us that many of our legislators are holding 'town hall' meetings next week. The online edition has a link to a nifty Google map that someone has compiled to show all of the locations and times of these meetings. (

There's just one problem... if the map is accurate (and I see no reason to think it is not - it comes from TVW), not a single one of those meetings will be held in Tacoma. Evidently, of the dozen or so Representatives and Senators from districts in Tacoma, none feel it is important to hear what we have to say.

by fredo on 2/20/2010 @ 7:29am
Thanks for the posting and the map.

Panachronic, once again I agree with your conclusion. Nevertheless I intend to send my legislator an opinion, of sorts, next election day.

by jenyum on 2/20/2010 @ 8:24am
It's not an exhaustive list. The Seattle Times doesn't really cover Tacoma politics unless there's a major story.

Congressman Adam Smith will be having a town hall meeting, but not on Feb. 20th (today)

Adam will host a town hall meeting Saturday, March 13th, 1:00-2:30pm at the Knutzen Family Theatre, 3200 SW Dash Point Road, Federal Way, WA 98023.

The purpose is to meet with constituents to listen to concerns, answer questions, and discuss issues facing Congress, the 9th district and Washington State. Space is limited so please RSVP if you are able to attend by calling (253) 896-3775 or (888) SMITH09.

I don't see other town halls listed yet on state legislator's sites, but if they do it like last year they won't be until mid to late March. Last year there was a big town hall meeting out at Salishan. Pierce County dems don't seem to have updated any events recently.

I also wanted to add that in my experience, constituents can always get a meeting with their state legislators if they request one.

by fredo on 2/20/2010 @ 9:37am
Jen, I think a lot of concerned citizens would attend a local town hall meeting but would be reluctant to try to arrange a meeting with their state legislator.

What is the value of these town hall meetings? Recent actions in the legislature have demonstrated that the will of the people is of no consequence. The law requiring a 2/3 vote to raise taxes has been abrogated because of some perceived "emergency." They don't really seem to care what people think or want. Another day at cirque de Gregoire.

by panachronic on 2/20/2010 @ 11:58am
Judging from the responses I have received to letters -- actually, more often it has been no response at all -- I have to agree with you. A Democrat legislator does not feel any need for dialog with constituents, for the simple reason that they think their seat is safe.

The map was created by TVW, a non-partisan state agency. I think it's as exhaustive as we are likely to get. Yes, it was posted by the Times... which says more about the TNT than it does the Times.

Pierce County dems don't seem to have updated any events recently.

And don't hold your breath while waiting. Rosa Franklin, in particular, is likely to be found hunkering down instead of meeting with voters.

by jenyum on 2/20/2010 @ 2:01pm
Franklin and Conway held a town hall in January.

Thursday, December 31 2009 - Rosa Franklin | Permalink
I hope to see you at my town hall meeting on Saturday, Jan. 9, from 10:00 a.m. - Noon at the Bates Community College south campus in Tacoma. I look forward to discussing expectations for the 2010 legislative session and to hear your questions and concerns. Joining me will be Rep. Steve Conway and a representative of the state Department of Social and Health Services to field questions.

I always get a response to my questions and emails, Sometimes it does take a while, but there's always some response. On more than one occasion I've called Jeannie Darneille's office and she's answered the phone herself.

by panachronic on 2/20/2010 @ 2:23pm
I'm sorry I missed that one. Conway, in particular, has never responded to anything I've sent him, and I'd love to know why. At least Franklin wrote back 2 months later to say "I don't have time for your issue."

by NEAL on 2/20/2010 @ 8:49pm
Panachronic, and anyone.

Your communications do need to be relevant and civil.

And, usually you need to be in district.

by jenyum on 2/22/2010 @ 10:45am
Gah, editing this because what I said the first time around was stupid.

If you South Ender's need something to do, talk to state senator Mike Carrell about changes to bail laws.

He's not getting a lot of support in the senate for the changes and is on the verge of scrapping their proposal entirely and coming up with something new. I hate to see the issue break down like this, I think the house really got it right and I'd love to see something like the house proposal pass the senate. We aren't talking about anything stricter than laws that exist in the majority of states.