The election results released by King County Elections at 4:08 PM today August 19, 2009 did not bring good news for Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels. He actually received the least votes of the 3 candidates battling for the 2 seats in the General Election.
Joe Mallahan picked up 4725 votes
Michael McGinn picked up 3989
Greg Nickels picked up 3943 votes.
Joe Mallahan has now moved into first place with 26.76% of the vote, Michael McGinn has slipped to second place with 26.48% and Nickels remained in third with 25.19%.
You can check the results for all the candidates running for Seattle Mayor by going to the King County Elections website.
The Primary Election is being decided by dismal turnout numbers. Out of 379,721 registered voters in Seattle only 81,725 voters have been counted so far. That’s a turnout of 21.52%.
The irony here is that Nickels is being defeated by 2 unknown candidates who have never run for office before. One has to wonder what kind of political campaign advice was being given to Nickels regarding the campaign he ran.
Over the years Nickels seems to have lost touch with his Democratic base which is strange. Most of his political record is very progressive and he has been a strong champion of environmental issues. Unfortunately he lost neighborhood support by his administration siding with developers over neighborhoods.
And he did not seem to be running a campaign that reached out to grassroots democrats. Many people seemed to feel estranged from Nickels. Maybe if he had spent more time campaigning and being visible things would now be different. As it is his prospects of making it through the primary don’t look good and have to be a shock to someone just elected to head the US Conference of Mayors.
The first Election returns from King County Elections shows a three way tie for Seattle Mayor. Greg Nickels the incumbent is actually in third place. Michael McGinn is at the top right now with 26.56%. Joe Mallahan is in second place with 25.81%. Greg Nickels is third with 25.05%.
These are early results and it is likely this race will not be decided for a week or so if this closeness continues in the next count. This is an all mail in ballot so we aren’t waiting for precincts to report like in the past.
King County Elections results posted 8:10 PM 8/18/2009
City of Seattle Mayor
Mike McGinn 16,810 26.56%
James Donaldson 5,849 9.24%
Greg Nickels 15,859 25.05%
Joe Mallahan 16,334 25.81%
Kwame Wyking Garrett 715 1.13%
Jan Drago 4,926 7.78%
Elizabeth Campbell 1,974 3.12%
Norman Zadok Sigler 592 0.94%
Write-in 238 0.38%
The Seattle City Council is currently in the process of passing legislation to create an Urban Forestry Commission. A bill introduced by Councilmember Nick Licata is currently before the City’s Environment Committee for a vote. It is expected to pass this afternoon and go before the full Council for a vote in 2 weeks.
Mayor Nickel’s has sent a letter to folks supporting the Urban Forestry Commission expressing his support. Below is the text of the letter.
Thank you for your letter and your support for Seattle’s urban forest. Maintaining and enhancing our urban forest is important to Seattle’s environment quality and community livability.
As you may know, I have adopted the goal of achieving an average of 30% canopy cover across the entire city. We recently reassessed our tree canopy and learned that after decades of tree loss, our canopy cover increased slightly to a current level of about 23% between 2002 and 2007. While we are pleased with our progress, we also are aware that more needs to be done to realize our vision of a thriving, sustainable urban forest.
I support the proposed Urban Forest Commission and look forward to working with its members. The majority of tree preservation and planting potential is on private property, and input from a commission will help inform the city’s overall approach to boosting the urban forest. Advice on any proposed legislation also will be a key role for the Commission. I look forward to hearing the Commission’s suggestions and input on a range of options before we move forward with a specific legislative proposal.
Thank you again for taking the time to write. If you have questions, please contact Tracy Morgenstern in the Office of Sustainability at (206) 386-4595 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mayor of Seattle
Clearcut, massacre, slaughter, call it what you want, Saturday while I was driving down 5th Ave NE toward Northgate I suddenly came across the above scenes at 123rd NE and 5th Ave NE.
The pictures tell a story in one sense but it is also a part of a larger story that is re-occurring too often in Seattle. It’s not one we should see in Seattle in this day and age. Yet the remaining groves of trees in Seattle are threatened and disappearing under the bulldozer and chainsaw just like in the pictures above.The west tree grove at Ingraham High School is only on a temporary stay of execution as the Seattle School District has reapplied for its permits to build the same identical building as before in the exact same location. The open lawn area on the North side of the school, among other locations on the largest public high school campus in Seattle, could easily accommodate the new addition without any problem. But the Seattle School Board doesn’t get it and doesn’t care. They have forgotten that they serve at the pleasure of the voters and most voters want to save trees, especially when viable alternatives exist.
Waldo Woods in the Maple Leaf area is also facing the chain saw as proponents for saving the area recently lost their appeal before a Seattle Hearing Examiner. Faced with the only possibility being going to Superior Court, Waldo Woods supporters face the possibility of having to post a huge bond of hundreds of thousands of dollars, which even if they could raise, they would lose if they lose an appeal in Superior Court.
And now the mowing down of a greenbelt area in the Pinehurst Community. One lot cleared and 4 more to go. The 5th Ave NE lot appears to have been cut down illegally. After a Sunday press conference by Save the Trees – Seattle and checking with the City, it turns out that the owner never received approval of his building permit for a single family home or permission to log the area. A cease and desist order has been issued to the owner but the trees are gone.
As Seattle’s tree canopy and green habitat continues to diminish, tree by tree and grove by grove, Seattle becomes less and less an Emerald City. So where is the city in all this. Seattle has a terribly weak ordinance pertaining to protecting trees.
It’s main thrust has been trying to save “exceptional trees” but this definition is so restrictive that few trees get saved. And tree groves currently have no protection because the Seattle department of Planning and Development under Greg Nickels does not consider them as valuable habitat areas to be saved.
The Seattle City Council has directed the Director to re-interpret the Director’s Rule to follow what they say the original intent was – to save not just single trees but also groves of trees because of their habitat value.
The Seattle City Council is currently considering an ordinance to declare a moratorium on cutting down tree groves on vacant lots until a revision of Seattle’s Tree Ordinance can take place. Such a revision must include a more enlightened vision of saving more of Seattle’s threatened green heritage because Seattle’s current tree policies are not saving tree groves.