Panther Lake – Cover Letter to WSDCC Resolution Committee

To: WSDCC Resolution Committee via Presidential Caucus instructions.

From: James Flynn, PCO RNT 11-0502

RE Resolution: Panther Lake – Provide Public Access

Panther Lake, Kent, in early Springtime
Beautiful Panther Lake in early spring.

The Panther Lake area of Benson Hill annexed to Kent several years ago. An increasing number of low income working families live along the Benson Corridor where apartment construction is booming and urbanization is happening at an accelerated pace a short distance from Panther Lake, a beautiful gem of the Pacific Northwest.

Open and Welcom to Panther Lake prior to 2009.
Open and Welcome Entrance to Panther Lake prior to 2009.

More affluent neighbors live in the north and east side of the lily covered body of water, more like a huge pond than a lake. Exclusive and gated manufactured home communities at the south end utilize the recreational benefits of the lake from private beachfront property where wildlife abounds. The WDFW boat launch in the NE quadrant, the only public access, was highly visible and open to the public, prior to the lake’s unwelcome annexation by the City of Kent.

newentrance-qpr
However, the property where the road abuts the waterfront, at the WDFW access point, was sold in haste prior to annexation. That was typical then, so builders could take advantage of money saving, and less stringent, construction permits and building construction codes of King County compared to Municipalities. The private property, where the entrance road abuts the lake is the only public access point to the large recreational space in the middle of urban sprawl.

The lake is located in the center of five 11th LD precincts in Kent, WA, east of the Benson Corridor (WA 515), and less than a half mile from the urban population of the 33th and 47th LDs.

Placement of this Resolution: Panther Lake – Provide Public Access into the Democratic Platform for 2017-2019 would benefit the people of Washington, especially families of the entire Benson Hill area of Renton and Kent.
There are several articles about Panther Lake, Kent WA featured at: http://www.thebenson.biz

Sincerely, James Flynn, PCO RNT 11-0502

Panther Lake Resolution

         Panther Lake – Provide Public Access

 

Whereas: Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) owns and maintains a non-motorized boat launch area at Panther Lake, located in the NE corner of the City of Kent, one-half mile South of the border with Renton.  (47.42149 latitude, and -122.18734 longitude)

Whereas: Panther Lake is located entirely within the urban environment of the 11th Legislative District.  The 34-acre lake surface is less than one quarter mile from the urban environment of residents of 33rd Legislative District to the West and the 47th Legislative District to the South, at the closest points along the busy Benson Corridor (WA 515).

Whereas: The WDFW Boat launch is the only public access to the thirty-four acres of Washington recreational space amidst urban sprawl.  Panther Lake offers the general public the ability to reach, touch, and enjoy the water’s edge, to travel on the water’s surface and view the water and the shoreline from adjacent locations.  

Whereas: Public access to the WDFW entrance necessitates users cross a thirty-foot WDFW easement over the driveway of a well maintained and manicured two story single family residence.  Families are uncomfortable crossing private property while transporting their non-motorized craft, be it canoe, pontoon boat, or raft. The lake is rendered, de facto, closed to the public.

Whereas: Panther Lake is not included in The City of Kent’s Parks Inventory.  The leadership of the City of Kent’s posture, stated publicly, in error, is that “Panther lake will sink into the ground in twenty-five years.” The City of Kent has no intention of taking any action with the lake, and declined requests to petition the State of Washington for any support. Kent is seeking answers in the disposition of 6.4 acres of City owned lakefront property.

Whereas:  RCW 36.87.130 states:

Vacation of roads abutting bodies of water prohibited unless for public purposes or industrial use.

No county shall vacate a county road or part thereof which abuts on a body of salt or freshwater unless the purpose of the vacation is to enable any public authority to acquire the vacated property for port purposes, boat moorage or launching sites, or for park, viewpoint, recreational, educational or other public purposes, or unless the property is zoned for industrial uses.     [1969 ex.s. c 185 § 7.]

Public access includes the ability of the general public to reach, touch, and enjoy the water’s edge, to travel on the waters of the state, and to view the water and the shoreline from adjacent locations.

Whereas: WAC 173-26-221(4)(c) states that: “Local governments should plan for an integrated shoreline area public access system that identifies specific public needs and opportunities to provide public access… This planning should be integrated with other relevant comprehensive plan elements, especially transportation and recreation.”

To support this planning, WAC 173-26-201(3)(c) calls for local governments to inventory existing and potential shoreline public access sites, including public rights-of-way and utility corridors. Because shoreline access includes visual access, important views of the water from shoreline areas were also identified.

 

Therefore, be it resolved: The State of Washington will make the people whole by holding the responsible agencies accountable for the error in land transactions in the Panther Lake area, in violation of: RCW 36.87.130, made prior to the annexation of Panther Lake to the City of Kent.

Be it further resolved:  The State of Washington or the responsible government agency will attempt to purchase part of the property adjacent to the State’s easement over private property, an irregular, oversize lot covered with blackberries, to replace the existing entrance and with appropriate WDFW signage. i.e. Public Fishing, Discover Pass Required.

Be it further resolved: If the WDFW entrance problem, where 116th Ave SE abuts the WDFW easement over private   property, cannot be resolved quickly within normal budget constraints, that a new location, where SE 200th St.  abuts Panther Lake on the West side of the lake, less than one quarter mile from the MT 169 bus-stop on the busy Benson Corridor (WA 515), and much more accessible to the general public, or any other similar lake access point, be selected and constructed as a WDFW boat launch and picnic area. WAC 173-26-221(4)(c)

James Flynn         Secretary 11th Legislative District Democratic Organization, PCO RNT 11-0502

425 243 5958               Submitted: 03/26/2016   WA Democratic Presidential Precinct Caucus 

Democrats Show A BIT O’GREEN on Saint Patrick’s Day

The State Of Washington CelebratesBy Jim Flynn PCO RNT 11-0502

King County Democrats will be showin a bit o’green Thursday, March 17th to show our connection to Saint Patrick (c 387-493).

Named Maewyn, he was born to a wealthy family in Britain where success in the agricultural economy was based on the Roman patron-client relationship system of social control. His father received substantial tax relief because of his position as deacon in the Christian church. The Roman Governor, a paternal protector and benefactor, formed alliances with selective clients and offered financial assistance and legal protection at the expense of the exploited lower class. The Roman writer Tacitus tells us the people of Britain, more than a century before the empire evolved into a Christian state, “…were seduced into alluring vices: pillared halls, baths and choice banquets. The simple natives gave the name of ‘culture’ to this aspect of their slavery” (Agricola 21).
costal

Saint Patrick grew up as a normal teenager. Religion wasn’t important to him and he made youthful mistakes as attested to in Confesio, one of his two surviving writings. When he was sixteen, however, he learned an important lesson in Homeland Security. Democrats may notice a familiar thread in the curriculum.

SaxonPirates235Saxons pirates, invited by Vortigern the Roman tyrant in Britain, served as a military buffer between Pelagianism heretics and the Roman Catholic party trying to gain influence in that protectorate. Vortigern also felt threatened by the aggressive sea-borne attacks of the Picts.

legion250When military and economic financial pressure on Rome made it necessary to withdraw their Legions and return home, the security of Britain was thrown into chaos by the military stranglehold of the Saxons.

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Picts and Celts each saw the weakened alliances as an opportunity to establish their own control of the agricultural resources. Saint Patrick’s family estate became an easy mark for raiding marauders from the land that Rome called Hibernia. Many unprotected agricultural Villas met violent ends at that time.

Democrats who work tirelessly for fair treatment of undocumented workers will sympathize with the affluent teenager who didn’t have the advantage of living wages, health care or political support. He was forced into Ireland’s guest worker program along with thousands of other captives.

HighPriestImpoverished and unprotected by law the young man was subjected to the abuse and degradation of slavery for six years by his master, Milchu, a Druidical high priest. We can only speculate how the cold isolation of the mountaintop where he tended his master’s livestock and the predictable psychology of abuse directed his thinking. Historians believe that is where he got the notion to convert Irish Druids to the system of Law and Social Justice that he learned as a child.

romulusADemocrats attentive to the direction of GATT, NAFTA, CAFTA, or TPP would be interested to know that the failure of Roman-Britain trade agreements and alliances caused a greater concentration of Britain’s wealth and economic stagnation. The economy of the Roman Empire went into steep decline. A total collapse of the global economy culminated in c 476 with the abdication of the last Western Roman Emperor, a child, marking the beginning of the Dark Ages .

The most important economic resource, tens of thousands of alien workers,
including Hibernia’s Champion Saint, escaped captivity and returned to their homes. Meanwhile, the agricultural Villas that had been the economic center of society in the Roman Empire dissolved.

Most of what King County Democrats know of the patron saint of Ireland comes through Irish tradition. After he returned home Saint Patrick spent more than a decade studying and learning. Because of his fluency in the language and knowledge of the Druid culture and way of thinking, he was commissioned to go to Ireland and minister to Christians. Finally he saw the opportunity he had been dreaming of since his captivity, to teach the Pagan people of Ireland a completely new way.

tshirtDemocrats who believe in strong environmental protection policies will feel relieved to know that Saint Patrick didn’t drum up the snakes of Ireland and drive them from the land. The universal symbol of earth consciousness, the serpent, was a religious icon to the Celtic Druids of Ireland. The snake, a powerful symbol of healing, is still used in corporate logos.

Driving the snakes from Ireland became a metaphor for the Druid loss of influence over the minds of the people. Democrats familiar with the conservative tax agenda will have no trouble imagining two Irishmen reframing the new political situation with some sarcastic Irish wit.
“Conas tá tú Mr. O’Connor.”
“Tá mé go maith, Michael. It looks like we’re finally getting some snake relief.”

Democrats are criticized for losing the confidence of voters by not clearly defining issues and positively affirming values. They might take heart knowing that literary critics over the centuries point out that St Patrick’s use of written Latin, the international communication media during that era, was inept at best.

BernieHillary350If you have been following the Bernie vs Hillary Debates, you will understand the dilemma. Like Democratic PCOs, Saint Patrick was a man of action, not words. The Confession, a short autobiography, was directed to members of his own religious order’s talking points. It responded, in part, to accusations that the charismatic leader was attempting a power grab even though he regularly spurned huge offers of wealth. He apologized for being unable to express his thoughts clearly in writing. Consider, he conversed in the Celtic language of Ireland, different from the language of his youth while trying to write his complex thought in encumbering Latin. We tend to use our own linguistic filters when reading the English translation and trying to figure out what his spirit and mind really meant as he searched for the right words:

I am unable to tell my story to those versed in the art of concise writing—in such a way, I mean, as my spirit and mind long to do, and so that the sense of my words expresses what I feel.

Democratic PCOs are concerned about the logistic problems of having over one-thousand voters in their precinct. Try to imagine St Patrick’s relentless energy as he traveled throughout Ireland, exactly half the area of Washington State, talking to and learning from everyone he met.

The Celtic Druids, outraged by his success arrested him several times only to see him escape each time. He was held captive by thugs and endured assassination attempts. Still, he worked relentlessly to correct the injustice that divided our world by promoting ideals of Justice, Law and Equality for a new society of rich and poor, slaves and freemen.

Like King County Progressives, St Patrick worked tirelessly to establish and maintain an educational system. He built schools that became the ideal of all Europe. During the following three centuries political leaders from diverse European cities called on graduates to help establish similar learning institutions in their communities.

Democrats of all races and cultures will wear neckties with green shamrocks and t-shirts with “Kiss me I’m Irish,” legends on March 17th. They are showing a visible link to the spirit of Saint Patrick, whose goal of working for the people transcends domination by the forces of fear and evil. This spirit of this great man, who changed the consciousness of everyone who came in contact with him, offers a timeless theme of ancient wisdom, the Democratic Ideal, where law and justice apply equally.

The Panther Lake Dilemma

There are only five 11th Legislative District precincts in Kent, WA. Those precincts include residents living east of the border of the Benson Corridor, WA 515. Panther Lake lays smack dab in the middle of the five. Low income working families predominate along the Benson. More affluent neighbors live in palatial estates in much of the area to the east of the gem of the Benson. Exclusive and gated manufactured home communities surround the southern tip of the lake.

There are still two picturesque farms immediately north of the lake offering a panoramic view from SE 196th St. Best when the sky is blue, the trees are green, and Mt Rainier shines in all her glory. You will find it one hundred paces east of the MT 169 bus stop at the traffic signal. Continue to follow SE 196th St, east, to 116th Ave SE. Stay in the marked lane for safety.

Turn right at 116th Ave SE. and go downhill four blocks. You will see a sign “PUBLIC FISHING.” You have arrived at the only public entrance to beautiful Panther Lake.

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Wildlife abounds in and around the lake. The lake has been de-facto closed to recreational use. The entrance to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife boat launch, the only public access, was highly visible and open to the public prior to the lake’s annexation by the City of Kent. However, an abutting property became a residential development project during the annexation process. That property is the only public access point to a large, recreational space in the middle of urban sprawl at the lake end near 116th Ave SE or SE 200th St.

publicfishing-qprFortunately, the state owns a 30-foot easement across the residential driveway abutting the WDFW facility at the end of 116th Ave SE at the Lake.  Washington Representative Steve Bergquist (D 11th LD) helped push the decision to reopen the facility. Last year, WDFW’s Ann Larson announced to an informal group of volunteers from Renton, Kent and unincorporated King County a sign announcing PUBLIC FISHING is now in place at the site.

The City of Kent does not recognize Panther Lake. No city functions are scheduled. It is not on the Kent Parks Inventory List. However, the lake is wide open for public fun and recreation through the marked State facility at the end of 116th Ave SE and SE 200th St. at the Lake.

There are no Democratic Precinct Committee Officers from the five Kent precincts . Of the thirty thousand residents of the Panther Lake area of Benson Hill, I bet less than a thousand have ever seen the lake. Until Steve Bergquist called WDFW to task, it was not open to the public. No one knows that a beautiful thirty-six acre pond imparting the serenity of Benson Hill, is within walking distance. Let’s get something started on Benson Hill.

Families from the Panther Lake area of Benson Hill should know that that Democrats from the area are working to introduce a resolution to the Washington State Democratic Central Committee. The resolution asks the State of Washington to improve livability in the area, by working to open up a healthy, attractive recreational space in the community.

 

 

Message From Bernie’s Campaign

Bernie2016

Jim –
This is what we’re up against, Jim: last month, the Clinton campaign held almost sixty fundraising events. They’ve often held these events with hedge fund managers, fracking interests, pharmaceutical executives, and other industries with business before the government.

Meanwhile, their Wall Street-funded super PAC spent ridiculous amounts of money to tip the balance in their favor in Super Tuesday states, and the trend continues in a number of contests happening over the next two weeks.
But what the billionaire class has yet to realize is that in this election, their obscene wealth is their weakness. Part of the reason we are doing so well and exceeded expectations last night is because the American people have had ENOUGH of a corrupt campaign finance system being used to buy our candidates and elections.
Our campaign is funded almost exclusively by 4.8 million individual contributions made by people like you. So we’ve set an important new goal: reaching 5 million individual contributions by the time Michigan votes in six days.

Make a $10 contribution to our campaign and help us reach 5 million individual contributions by the time Michigan votes in six days.

When it comes to taking on Donald Trump in November, one thing is clear: Democrats, Independents, and Republicans alike are sick of the influence of big money in politics. We cannot afford to give Trump the upper-hand on this issue. It could be decisive.In solidarity,
Jeff Weaver
Campaign Manager
Bernie 2016


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Precinct Caucus to Delegate Democratic National Convention

In Washington State, the Democratic and Republican parties claim and maintain the right to determine the process for selecting the Presidential Candidate in 2016. Candidate names will appear on a Primary Ballot.

The Democratic Presidential Primary Ballot will not count. The Democratic party will select their Presidential candidate through the Precinct Caucus held on March 26th,2016.

In King County, the precinct caucus locations are determined by contiguous precincts within Legislative Districts. The Democratic Precinct Caucus will be held in public school cafeterias and union halls on Saturday March 26th from 10am to 12 noon. Typically, 8 to 10 neighbors from each precinct attend. Each Caucus location houses 10 to fifteen precincts. In the 11th Legislative District we are working to attract 150 attendees at each caucus location.

Attendees assemble at an assigned table for their precinct. If there is no Precinct Committee Officer present at the table, a Temporary Chair is Appointed who quickly organizes the selection of Permanent Chair and Recording Secretary through a majority vote at individual tables. (allow 5 minutes) Members should agree on a solution in case of a tie, like a coin toss, before voting begins. The rules are read. If anyone in attendance has an initiative that they want to present to King County Democratic Central Committee then it is presented, in writing, at the meeting. Each Table will have a discussion of Presidential Candidates.

The candidate Vote determines the allocation of delegates and alternates to the King County Democratic Caucus. The delegate process continues through the Democratic Legislative District convention. From there, delegates are selected to attend the National Convention. If you plan to run as a Delegates for National Convention you must file a Statement of Candidacy form available after March 14th. Surrogate forms for delegate consideration are also available if a legitimate cause prevents someone from attending.

The most important part of the process is finding the location of your Caucus. Links are provided at this site for finding you precinct and Caucus location. A complete guide to the State of Washington Democratic Precinct Caucus: http://www.wa-democrats.org/sites/wadems/files/documents/2016%20Caucus%20and%20Convention%20Guide.pdf

If you are interested in participating in grass roots politics, the Precinct Caucus is truly the starting point for the Grass Roots movement in the State of Washington. Your participation is not just important but necessary this year if you expect to reclaim the promise of the American Dream for the working class. Suit up and show up to the Democratic Precinct Caucus on March 25th at 10am and become a delegate for the candidate who holds your values.