Cheers n’ jeers: Hot van donation in Federal Way

Cheers to Andrea Peterson, the general manager of Weatherly Inn Assisted Living in Tacoma, for arranging the donation of her senior center’s van to Christ’s Church in Federal Way. An unknown arsonist had destroyed one of the Federal Way church’s shuttle vans back in September. As a bonus, the new van comes with a wheelchair ramp.

Cheers to the Seattle Mariners and their playoff run!

Jeers to the racial disparity in homeownership in Washington state. A work group’s findings show that, despite housing discrimination and redlining no longer being legal, the housing gap is even more significant now. Disparities between white and non-white homeownership is between 14% and 18% in King County – and in some counties, the gap is much higher. Owning a home is a primary way to build wealth for many families. Government leaders must create more opportunities for people to own their home.

Cheers to the 30th Legislative District candidates for participating — and behaving themselves — in the Federal Way Mirror’s forum this week. The candidates were civil and thoughtful in their answers. The crowd was attentive. With all the craziness that the U.S. political system is experiencing across the spectrum, it was refreshing to finally witness a candidate forum that embraced substance over spectacle.

Jeers to election deniers.

Cheers to the National Culvert Removal, Replacement and Restoration Program that will work wonders for the region’s salmon migration and spawning. The federal money will replace at least 50 culverts in King County to allow fish and other native animals to pass safely under roads. The program is part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which made about $1 billion in federal money available to restore fish culverts, many of which are expected to be used in our region. This will be money well spent. Salmon play a critical role in Washington’s environment, economy and food supply.

Jeers to rising rents in Federal Way. Median rents in Federal Way are now about $1,461 for a one-bedroom apartment and about $1,792 for a two-bedroom apartment, according to a report from Apartment List. Federal Way rent prices have gone up by 9.2% in the past year, and since the start of the pandemic in March 2020, the city’s rent is up by 30.8%, according to the report. Please make it stop.

Cheers to the Federal Way Symphony’s season premiere this weekend at the Performing Arts and Event Center. The show will feature solo oboe action as well as performances of Mozart and Bach. Ain’t it great to have something like this in your hometown?

— By Andy Hobbs, editor