Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor: March 10

Community council

Is Web site a worthy cost?

Should Vashon-Maury Island Community Council reduce support for committees to pay for a Web site upgrade? King County reimburses the council for expenses up to $10,000 per year. This allotment has not been a problem for more than a decade.

At the February VMICC meeting, members voted to reduce individual committee budgets from $300 to $100 per year and to disallow committee expenditures for meeting room rent and refreshments. Only expenses for copying and travel will be allowed unless committees petition the board for waivers.

After this reduction in committee support, a motion was made to spend $3,000 to upgrade the VMICC Web site! (The vote will be at the March 15 meeting.)

Why do VMICC committees need our support?

• VMICC committees help with safety, sustainability, transportation, land use, ferries, septic, town plan, library and other important issues. Committees are where the majority of VMICC work gets done.

• Committee meetings should occur in “public” facilities large enough to accommodate all interested parties. Meetings may not be held in homes. Charity rent does not support Vashon business.

• Refreshment expenses typically occur when celebrating accomplishments or when hosting a special guest speaker. This has not been abused.

• Volunteer committee chairs are hard to find. Currently five of eight standing committees are inactive. Will volunteers step up when they must take additional time and effort to increase their budget, to find free meeting space and to pay out-of-pocket for special refreshments?

• If these restrictions were in place during 2009, six committees would have required waivers. Transportation — $854.94 (including advertisements and rent); town plan — $206.52; governance and policy — $20.00 (rent); sustainable practices — $93.08 (refreshments); alternative currency — $263.03; septic solutions — $180.00 (rent).

VMICC can ask for a one-time increased allotment from King County to pay for upgrading the VMICC Web site.

— Melvin Mackey

Granny’s Attic

Closure was tough for us, too

While the closure of Granny’s Attic was torturous for our shoppers, it was a bit strange for us as well!  Our annual closure for cleaning and painting usually lasts two weeks.  This year, because of our long list of projects, we decided to close for three weeks.

While our shoppers were in withdrawal, we were busy replacing toilets, building shelving, cleaning and painting — and all the while sorting and pricing items that our community generously donates to us.

We, too, experienced our own sense that something was wrong — something was missing.  We missed the pleasure of restocking the store and seeing the familiar faces of our customers. We missed the rush of customers as the doors open, and the pleasures we all get from their discoveries.

We want to thank all of you who donate to Granny’s, shop at Granny’s, and who supported us on the day we reopened. You help make this the greatest recycling center on our Island!

— Donna Klemka, president of the Granny’s board,

and Richard Lipke, Granny’s business manager

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