Spend state money on athletic venues
I believe that Husky Stadium and Key Arena should have a place in the state budget.
Husky Stadium is a Northwest icon and has been around for 88 years. Husky Stadium is in need of renovation. The total cost of the renovation will be about $300 million. This is less than half of the cost of the new state convention center.
The center project is funded by hotel taxes at a cost of $766 million. That is more than Key Arena and Husky Stadium renovations combined.
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This hotel tax is a great way of making money for the state. For example, it helped pay off Safeco Field years ahead of schedule. The Key Arena renovation will hopefully attract a new NBA team to Seattle. A new basketball team would bring in money from locals as well as tourists who will come and see the games.
All of the people who come will need to stay in hotels, eat, etc. The new arena will pay for itself in a few years just like Safeco.
Though the state budget may be in a deficit, in the long run these two projects would bring lots of money to our state.
Aaron Charneski, Olympia
After-school programs should be saved
I was deeply saddened to read about budget cuts and how it is affecting our economy, and our society.
Due to this, after-school programs, one of the many things being cut next year, is one of the first cuts to be implemented. This makes me sad and angry because, as a kid, I always looked forward to the after-school program. I had some of my best memories there.
I know that after-school programs may cost a lot. But isn’t there any way we can help that? Why do the after-school programs have to go on field trips? We can make after-school programs less expensive, therefore saving and keeping them for kids who come through their doors.
One of the best parts of the after-school program was just playing outside, and having the playground all to ourselves or playing sprout ball, tag, and other outdoor activities with friends.
Let’s keep or at least try and salvage after-school programs by eliminating activities like field trips. This eliminates extra costs such as food, expensive activities done there and transportation. This saves money and allows us to spend money on more relevant items, like daily snacks for the kids and extra employees.
As a kid, one of the best parts of elementary school and middle school was the after-school program. I would hate to see this disappear for every other kid who enjoys it as well.
Brenna Peterson, Olympia
Find happiness among family and friends
I write in regard to the story titled “Layoffs can strain or strengthen family bonds for workers.”
This article really hit home for me because many of my friends and family members are losing their jobs and getting layoff notices.
Some of my affected friends and family members have children that are grown and supporting themselves, so they aren’t struggling quite as much as the software engineer who has to balance the needs of her family with her ongoing job search.
In my family we have had more time to spend together. Our friends that we weren’t able to see as often are now showing up as frequently as ever to our family get-togethers.
I have also noticed that even with job loss and extra emotional strain, we still have a positive outlook on ourselves and the world around us.
I think that this means that we haven’t completely bought into the corporate dream of our people becoming a consumerist society. We can still find happiness among our family and friends, share laughs, and make memories together without having to physically purchase our entertainment.
If we spend more time with the people we love then we will emerge as a nation on cloud nine.
Sarah Colerick, Oakville
Change program to keep it running
I write in regard to the letter titled, “No one happy with after-school cuts.”
I agree that this is a problem that must be fixed. There is high attendance in these programs. These programs help young students that are trying to get extra help and they help parents that need their kids to be supervised while they are still at work.
If parents want to keep these programs they are going to need to pay for this service.
As a middle school student, I took advantage of these programs but due to the economy these programs are costly.
In elementary school, my parents paid for YMCA care. It was necessary because both my parents could not get off work until 5 p.m. If these programs were to have a fee parents would be able to have this option and the city would have more money to keep these programs running.
There are other options that parents have such as YMCA or Boys and Girls Clubs. Many families take advantage of this program and it needs to stick around.
There needs to be some changes in the program in order to keep the program running.
Alex Giebelhaus, Oakville