Letters to the Editor

Education funding vs. cell phone law | Federal Way letters

State Sen. Tracey Eide (D-District 30) has once again demonstrated why I cannot trust her to properly represent me.

With the existing hands-free cell phone law in effect for a mere 18 months, Eide is initiating the next phase of her planned assault on cell phone usage. Eide is preparing to propose legislation that would change the use of cell phones while driving from a secondary to a primary offense.

This is a prime example of "legislative creep" in the most blatant form. First, you get your foot in the door with a law you think will squeak by the majority of the Legislature. Then you unleash your full (social engineering) agenda one and a half years later.

Regardless of how you feel about cell phone usage, the point that people should be most disturbed with is her application of taxpayer resources. With her senior position in Olympia, I would have hoped to see her leading the charge to right the wrong of the Washington State Supreme Court decision against the Federal Way School District. It was ruled that our school district, despite its significant contribution to the state's coffers, is not entitled to equal amounts of money for education.

Why is Eide not spearheading this effort? Why are major media outlets announcing that her new cell phone bill, not her new education bill, will be introduced as soon as the Legislature is back in session? Isn't fully funding our local school district a paramount priority in her book? Why is she spending valuable (taxpayer) time and resources on tweaking a law that has only been in effect for 18 months?

I recognize that adding a few modifications and addendums to RCW 46.61.667 is a whole lot easier than tackling education funding. Creating the illusion of highway safety is a feel-good short-term accomplishment. But Sen. Eide, you are a senior leader in the Senate. We need you to use your influence to do the heavy lifting by securing adequate funding for our local school district. Don’t spend Olympia’s limited time this year tweaking a fledgling cell phone law. Please get your priorities straight.

Larry Paterson, Federal Way

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