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Week in Review: February 2, 2024 - with Erica Barnett

Hacks & Wonks

Release Date: 02/02/2024

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More Episodes

On this week-in-review, Crystal is joined by Seattle political reporter and editor of PubliCola, Erica Barnett!

Crystal and Erica discuss public outcry over targeted inspections of LGBTQ+ establishments and Seattle Council President Sara Nelson’s remarks opposing even-year elections for local races. They then turn to news from King County that the target closure date of 2025 for the Youth Jail will be missed and how the annual “Point In Time” homelessness count will be different this year. The show wraps up with new polling that Seattle voters are supportive of a big Transportation Levy and a stunning update on the Snohomish County gravel yard vs elementary school situation.

As always, a full text transcript of the show is available below and at officialhacksandwonks.com.

Find the host, Crystal Fincher, on Twitter at @finchfrii and find today’s co-host, Erica Barnett, at @ericacbarnett.

 

Resources

Pairing Advocacy and Research for Progress with Andrew Villeneuve of the Northwest Progressive Institute from Hacks & Wonks

 

Seattle’s Queer Community Demands Swift Change After Raids of Gay Bars” by Vivian McCall from The Stranger

 

Seattle LGBTQ+ bars, clubs on edge after ‘lewd conduct’ violations” by Alexandra Yoon-Hendricks from The Seattle Times

 

Council President Sara Nelson Opposes Effort to Increase Voter Turnout” by Hannah Krieg from The Stranger

 

Amid Backlash Against Therapeutic Alternatives, Youth Jail Will Stay Open Past 2025 Target Date for Closure” by Erica C. Barnett from PubliCola

 

KCRHA Plans More Focused Homelessness Count, Council President Supports Bills That Would Make It Easier To Take Away Drug Users' Kids” from PubliCola

 

Seattle Voters On Board with Big Transportation Levy, New Polling Shows” by Doug Trumm from The Urbanist

 

Gravel yard warns Snohomish County school to stop speaking out — or else” by Daniel Beekman from The Seattle Times

 

Find stories that Crystal is reading here

 

Listen on your favorite podcast app to all our episodes here

 

Transcript

[00:00:00] Crystal Fincher: Welcome to Hacks & Wonks. I'm Crystal Fincher, and I'm a political consultant and your host. On this show, we talk with policy wonks and political hacks to gather insight into local politics and policy in Washington state through the lens of those doing the work with behind-the-scenes perspectives on what's happening, why it's happening, and what you can do about it. Be sure to subscribe to the podcast to get the full versions of our Tuesday topical show and Friday week-in-review delivered to your podcast feed. If you like us, the most helpful thing you can do is leave a review wherever you listen to Hacks & Wonks. Full transcripts and resources referenced in the show are always available at officialhacksandwonks.com and in our episode notes.

If you missed our Tuesday topical show, I chatted with Andrew Villeneuve of the Northwest Progressive Institute about their work to advance progressive policies through their focuses on research and advocacy. Among other projects this year, NPI is working to combat the six dangerous Republican-sponsored initiatives and push for even-year elections for local races. Today, we are continuing our Friday week-in-review shows, where we review the news of the week with a co-host. Welcome back to the program, friend of the show and today's co-host: Seattle political reporter and editor of PubliCola, Erica Barnett.

[00:01:26] Erica Barnett: Hello - it's great to be here.

[00:01:28] Crystal Fincher: Great to have you back again, as always. Well, starting out the news of the week was something a lot of people were both surprised and very troubled to see. And that was Seattle's queer community being very alarmed - and now demanding swift change - after raids that included gay bars. What happened here?

[00:01:49] Erica Barnett: The Joint Enforcement Team, which is a group of Seattle Police Department officers and the Liquor Control Board of the state, went out and they were checking on a bunch of bars - I think it was more than a dozen. But the thing that has gotten the most attention is citations at two gay bars on Capitol Hill - The Eagle and The Cuff - for lewd conduct. And I believe it was associated with guys being in jockstraps and possibly nipple showing - and frankly, to my mind, very silly stuff that could not matter less. But they cracked down on this and it kind of feels like a throwback to the days when the city and the state were really concerned with behavior in bars and things that are moralistic laws that probably shouldn't even be on the books. So there has been a real outcry since then from the LGBTQ+ community about - why is this something that the Liquor Control Board and the police are focusing on right now? Feels like we're kind of in a backlash era on a lot of different issues from policing to just stuff like this moral conduct BS. And this is just another example of that. It's really unfortunate and kind of shocking that in 2024, the police and the Liquor Board care about whether somebody's butt is showing. It feels very, very silly and very, like I said, very throwback to a different era.

[00:03:07] Crystal Fincher: Definitely feels like a throwback to a different era - a few different eras - that aren't all that long ago, some pretty recent. But we can't ignore that happened during a time right now where we're seeing laws passed across the country to criminalize members of the LGBTQ+ community and targeting them in a way that is certainly more severe than we've seen in decades, seemingly. And so there was some pushback by some members of the team there - Hey, this wasn't actually a raid, these were check-ins. Regardless of what you call it, the impact is really the same. It has a chilling impact that scares people out of the space. You've got police seemingly coming in and not just going - Hey, I want to check on you in these situations. They came in as part of an enforcement action, it seemed. They also took pictures of people - they said, for evidence. But again, what are we using these lewd laws for? And I saw some people online say - Well, we don't allow nudity in hetero spaces so we're just treating the gay community the same way. There's nothing to see here. And oh, we absolutely do allow nudity--

[00:04:21] Erica Barnett: Well, and also we should - this is, what frustrates me about this is I feel like the police and the Liquor Board are so far behind the rest of the public. I think if you went out on the street and asked 10 people or 100 people - Should guys be allowed to wear jockstraps at a bar? And if everybody's consenting, should some sexual behavior be allowed at a bar? And should women be allowed to be topless or whatever? Most people would say - Yeah, I guess. I don't care. I'm not going there. You have consenting adults in an environment where everybody knows where they are - I cannot imagine that the public is on board with using police resources, which are supposedly so scarce that they can't respond to 911 calls, on cracking down on people for a little bit of nudity and "lewd behavior." I mean, the fact that we have lewd behavior laws is a whole other subject, but it all just feels very ridiculous to me.

[00:05:15] Crystal Fincher: Yeah, and those laws are very relevant as a subject right now. And they are a problem - they are unequally enforced. In fact, one of the owners of one of these queer bars does own several other mainly hetero bars and spoke with authority saying - Hey, my bars that are not gay bars don't have this happen. They are policing these bars differently. And one of them testified that a police officer recently said that they're just starting to enforce these new laws again. It has a lot of people really questioning what the priorities are. As you said, we do actually poll people pretty often in Seattle about what concerns them. And nudity has never made the list, that I've seen - they are concerned about a variety of things of public safety. This doesn't seem to take the cake. And as you said, with a shortage - as they say - of police officers and resources to keep people safe, seems like they could be used in a much better and effective way than taking a picture of someone exposing a nipple. I just don't know where the priority is, and I do hope that this spurs some questioning of officials involved. How did this happen in the City of Seattle? How was there no one involved in this process that could raise the red flag of - Hey, this looks real suspect. This looks like we are not treating this community in the way that we treat other communities. It's just really a challenge.

There was a Washington State Liquor Control Board meeting, a couple of them - one yesterday where there's quite a bit of public comment from concerned community members. Members of the board said that this is a very concerning incident for them. They did end up questioning the usefulness of lewd laws overall. They did say - Hey, as an administrative body, it really isn't in our wheelhouse to be changing the law, but we do think that the legislature should review these lewd laws. The LGBTQ caucus within the legislature is going to be meeting about this to potentially address the lewd laws and potentially pulling from some other legislation that had been advanced by sex workers, who have advanced a lot of worker protection safety, workplace safety legislation to potentially help prevent something like this - unequal enforcement - from happening again. Just doesn't seem like lewd laws make sense in our society today, and I do hope they take a look at that. But certainly alarming news to a lot of people, myself included, to see. And surprising in a city like Seattle, but it really does go to show we just can't take anything for granted - that these things can't happen here. Potentially they can. And we need to make sure we're doing all we can to ensure that we are not targeting vulnerable communities.

Also want to talk about a story that made a decent amount of news, certainly in political Seattle, this week. And it was news that Council President Sara Nelson opposes an effort to increase voter turnout. What happened here?

[00:08:27] Erica Barnett: Well, so there was a story in The Stranger that quoted Sara Nelson from a meeting about a week and a half ago, saying that she had a strong concern about moving local elections to even years. The part that got quoted was - From the perspective of a local government candidate, I don't believe that greater turnout necessarily means a better informed public. And that was the part that got quoted and I think really blew up on social media, sort of suggesting that Sara Nelson - and the article also explicitly said - that Sara Nelson believes that there should be less voter turnout and that it's better for politicians like her who - she is one of the more conservative members of the city council - that it would be better for politicians like her if fewer people voted. And that's what got spread really widely. I will say there is a lot of debate about whether we should go to even-year elections.

But that quote from Sara Nelson was - to me, it was a classic example of taking a quote out of context. I was at that meeting and I remember her comments, but that didn't jump out at me. And the reason it didn't jump out was that she went on for several more minutes. And I'll just quote a little bit more of what she said. It doesn't necessarily mean a better informed public when it comes to the issues that impact people's lives directly, from public safety to potholes. These are the issues that we here at the dais deal with, and I'm concerned that there will not be time or there will not be interest in hosting all the forums my colleagues attended last year. Media will not be interested in the lower down the ballot races because of the high profile stuff like President and Congress. Down ballot participation hasn't really been examined and for those reasons, I'm concerned about moving local elections to even years. I think that would be bad for cities across the state. And she was expressing one side of this debate, which is that people in even-year elections - when there's president, when there's Congress, when there's all the statewide races, when there's just tons and tons and tons of other races - people aren't going to continue down the ballot and they're not going to inform themselves or vote in those very low on the ballot races, the ones that deal with potholes, the ones that deal with all those other local issues that the council deals with. So I think that quote was wildly misrepresented, and she was expressing a common argument against even-year elections.

Now, agree with it or not, she wasn't saying that she thinks people shouldn't be allowed to vote or that she likes low voter turnout - which it's understandable that that tiny little snippet was interpreted that way. But she did go on for quite a while. And I think it's really unfortunate that the rest of that very long quote was just clipped out.

[00:10:56] Crystal Fincher: As you say, Sara Nelson does have a tendency to go on for a while and sometimes the thoughts aren't as clear and easy to parse, sometimes you do have to do a bit of reconstituting to fully understand what she is trying to say. And it is important to have the full context of all of her comments there. I do think that it's important to pay attention to all of the things that she said. And that is one of the things that she said. And it's very possible, as I've seen her do before, where she'll throw out a lot of things - she may not expand upon them or be able to really fully articulate why she said them. But it is important to me that we don't ignore this because we see this happen in a lot of debates where they'll throw out some seemingly fairly common mainstream points of debate - people can disagree, this is generally what they think. But that portion - which I do think it is important to not discard just because there were other reasons also given - was the justification for why people like me, a Black woman, shouldn't be able to vote. A specific tool of disenfranchisement that we are hearing parroted today across the country. She is not the only person to articulate this ever. It's troubling, and I do think it's important to call it out.

[00:12:18] Erica Barnett: I just would recommend people watch the entire segment of that meeting on the 22nd. Because I do think that is super inflammatory - people are saying stuff like that all the time around the country. MAGA conservatives want to disenfranchise Black people, want to disenfranchise Hispanic people, want to disenfranchise everyone who won't vote for the Trump agenda. And that is horrifying. I don't think that's what Sara Nelson was saying here. I think that describing her as a conservative in Seattle is very real, but describing her as a MAGA Republican is ridiculous - in my opinion.

[00:12:50] Crystal Fincher: I don't even think we need to label her as a standard Republican, as a MAGA Republican, as a conservative. She's definitely a conservative. But I do think we are at a point in time where it is dangerous to ignore that - even if it's one point out of five or six that she made, it is included in the points that she made. And ignoring things like that or not taking that seriously, whether it comes out of the mouth of Trump or out of the mouth of Reagan Dunn or out of the mouth of Sara Nelson, has been what has helped to get us to the point that we're at right now - which is not a great point since we're rolling back voting rights all over the place in the country and in danger of doing that even more. I do see where people could have different interpretations of what she said. I think it's important to, while viewing the full context of what she said and that she did give a lot of other reasons, to make sure that this is never, ever, ever a reason that anyone articulates. And that anytime it's articulated, we hear that and we respond - because ignoring that makes it worse. And saying things in seemingly innocuous ways and putting - okay, three reasonable reasons and a wildly racist reason is how those views are peddled.

[00:14:08] Erica Barnett: I don't think she was making a wildly racist point. I am not a defender of Sara Nelson and her policies. I do think that lots of them are very damaging, but I believe she was basically making one point - which is when you have a lot of stuff at the top of the ballot, it is hard for voters to learn about or care about the stuff at the bottom. I share all your concerns, but I also think that it's important to be accurate about these things.

[00:14:33] Crystal Fincher: I think it is important to be accurate. I happen to disagree with the other points that she made and think they're disproven by California's even-year elections and the success seen there. There's going to be continued debate on this. But I do think that regardless of what her intention is, it's another intention versus impact statement. The impact of the words that she used has been undeniable over the years and how they're being used now is to disenfranchise.

[00:15:00] Erica Barnett: My frustration is mostly that The Stranger wrote this article that was very inflammatory without providing the appropriate context, which is the job of journalists - instead of trying to make somebody a villain when there are lots of policy reasons to make somebody a villain that don't involve taking their words out of context. But I really look forward to the debate on the even-year elections, because I think one thing you can say without any caveats is that Sara Nelson is not going to be a fan of voting reforms of any kind. And I think that that is going to break down along very much progressive and moderate and conservative lines. And I think we'll see hopefully more articulation of why people are for or against this. And that'll be revealing, I think, to people in the public trying to make up their minds on this.

[00:15:44] Crystal Fincher: Absolutely. I think you and I agree that the full context should always be known. I think it is helpful to see the full context of what she said. I just happen to also believe that we can't ignore the content that is included in that context. Even if it wasn't her main point and she didn't have an intent to do that, I just can't ignore that being included - from whoever says it at any point in time - to make sure that that doesn't make it easier for other people to continue to disenfranchise others.

I do want to talk about a story you covered this week about the Youth Jail looking like it's going to stay open past 2025, which was its target date for closure. What happened here?

[00:16:34] Erica Barnett: Well, essentially what happened is Dow Constantine in 2020 announced that he was going to have a target of 2025 for the Youth Jail to close - and actually more than a target, he said it would be closed. And since then, there has been an advisory group that's been meeting and discussing alternatives to the Youth Jail. And they came up with a list of six recommendations. And that list of recommendations, I think, reflects the fact that there is a real debate about what to do with young people who have committed very serious crimes like murder and if they can be immediately released into, let's say, a low-security or no-security therapeutic environment, or if they need to be in a secure locked cell, essentially. At the same time, the county has not come up with money to do any of the alternatives that are suggested in this report. And they right now don't really have a lot of prospects for coming up with money because unless there's a ballot measure, the money has to come out of the county's general fund, which is between $35 and $50 million in the hole next year.

So right now, the proposal is - basically there's some consensus recommendations that came out of the advisory group that are about setting up community supports and standing up more groups to help people, and this kind of stuff that we hear over and over again. It's currently fairly vague and would cost money, but not as much money as the recommendations that were a little more contentious. One, where there is general consensus but not total consensus, was to build these new housing alternatives called "community care homes" for people who leave the Youth Jail but don't have a safe place to go. So those would be essentially group homes. And the need is really in South King County. And those would be quite expensive - you're talking perhaps single family homes, more of a home-like environment. And then the more controversial idea was something that's called "respite and receiving centers," which would be where police would take kids immediately after they are arrested. And it would theoretically not be a jail, but in a lot of cases, depending on the crime, kids wouldn't be able to leave. There's locked versions of these that exist elsewhere. There's low-security versions. And so that is also very much up in the air, and it also would cost quite a bit of money. So we're sort of in a period of stasis where there's going to be some examination of these alternatives, but the Youth Jail itself is not going to close.

And just last thing, the Youth Jail - the Patricia Clark Children and Family Center is its official name - it went down into the single digits in terms of population during COVID and it's back up to about 30, 40. And population before COVID and before all these promises was about 50% Black - I think it was like 47%. The population after COVID - and of course, the goal of this in part is to reduce disproportionality - but the population now is still approximately 50% Black. And that's wildly out of proportion with the King County population. So progress has not been made, and I think that's the headline and the depressing conclusion - that we just haven't done a whole lot since before the pandemic.

[00:19:37] Crystal Fincher: Yeah, it certainly appears that way. And several members of the council, in addition to the King County Executive, seem to be grappling with this and talking in a perhaps different way than they had before. Dow Constantine said that he believes there will continue to be a need for secure detention, meaning traditional jail for kids accused of the most serious crimes. Councilmember Girmay Zahilay said - I think the controversy will be around if a young person poses a serious threat to the community, to community safety - if, for example, they've been charged with murder - will that person be able to just walk free in a couple of days? He said, on the flip side - If we're going to build another facility that is a secure detention facility, we have to be clear on what we're changing to make it different from the current Youth Jail. So we will continue to pay attention to how they negotiate their way through this and how they do define what they're doing that is going to make it different from what they're currently doing, if at all. It's going to be interesting to see how they continue to go about that.

Also want to talk about the King County Regional Homelessness Authority planning a more focused homelessness count this year, which is different than they have done it in recent years. What is changing with the way they're doing the "Point In Time" count this year and why are they changing it?

[00:21:01] Erica Barnett: So the "Point In Time" count used to be a literal point-in-time count where people would go out at night and count people that they saw in tents and cars, and it would be an estimate. And it was always regarded as an undercount. King County Regional Homelessness Authority has since then adopted a form of sampling where they go out - they set up locations and invite people to come there. They give people who do show up coupons to give to people they know in their networks. And through a series of going through people's networks, they've reached people that wouldn't ordinarily be reached by just setting up a survey. And they use that to come up with a number. The last time they did this, they ran into some challenges - one of which is that they didn't have enough locations. Particularly in South King County, people were left out - populations and areas of South King County were left out. And they also did a separate portion of it, which was a qualitative process, where they did these interviews with people about what their experience being homeless was like. The interviews were, as I reported last year, often very rambling. They didn't include specific questions. They were just supposed to be conversations. But those interviews were used to determine the initial five-year plan for reducing homelessness. And they were regarded as pretty problematic, so they dropped that portion this year. They're going to more locations. They're doing it for a longer period of time, so there's going to be a little more time to collect interviews. And I think just overall, it's going to be more organized this year. From my reporting, it sounds like it was somewhat chaotic and rushed the last time - again, particularly in South King County, because that's where they started. And so they learned all their lessons off of the South End and then applied them in other areas. So the plan is just to be a little bit more organized and also do more training. Last year, there was a brief training that could be done online. And I think there's been more training this year and people are given specific questions to ask, rather than - What has it been like for you? - which was one of the questions last time.

[00:22:57] Crystal Fincher: And why is that "Point in Time" count so important?

[00:23:01] Erica Barnett: Well, it's important in a practical sense of being able to receive federal funds. It's also mandatory - HUD requires it. But it also gives a sense of whether homelessness is getting better or worse, whether it's going down or going up. And so. It's never an exact count. Even when you're doing statistical sampling, it's not going to be exact. And what's kind of wild is that there's a bunch of different counts for King County - one is done by the State Commerce Department, there's a King County one, and then there's a King County Homelessness Authority one. And they vary wildly - they are just tens of thousands apart. So one of the things that the KCRHA count does - it's the largest count. It's the one that has the largest number, which is over, I believe, 50,000 people experiencing homelessness in King County - I don't know if that's the correct number, but it gives probably a better sense of the scale than the previous "Point In Time" count, which was always around 10,000 to 13,000. So it kind of more accurately represents how bad the problem is, but it also shows year after year whether the number is going up or down using the same methods.

[00:24:02] Crystal Fincher: Well, we will pay attention to what that is. Certainly, this has been talked about throughout campaigns, during election season, from electeds who have just recently been elected or reelected. And so it's going to be really important to see if what they have been doing has resulted in more or less - it's not an exact count, but it is a process that seemingly repeats, has for several years. So relative size of the count, hopefully, is going to be an indicator of where we're at and if any progress has been made.

Also want to talk about new polling showing that Seattle voters look like they are supportive of a big transportation levy. Polling was done to determine the levels of support for a more modest levy versus one that includes additional projects, and it looks like there is support across the board. What did you see?

[00:25:00] Erica Barnett: Well, I think that even though transportation is not an issue that is in the headlines, it's something people experience every day, obviously. And people who use transit in particular can both see progress on some of the Rapid Ride lines that are being funded with previous levy funds and also frustration with the fact that things are not proceeding as quickly as voters might have hoped. So I think it shows that there is very strong support for some of these less high-profile issues, like the way that we get around our city - but also in a larger sense that people are still willing to support taxes when they go to specific things. And I think that might seem like an obvious point, but if you look at some of the other problems that we're facing, like homelessness, like the Youth jail and the very large cost of replacing it that we're just discussing, there's hope - because people actually are willing to pay for these things. I think people get very irritated by sales taxes, and understandably so - and it's the most regressive kind of tax. And at the same time, they're willing to support property taxes, which I think leaders should really take a look at. And the Housing Levy that passed recently is a good example of the city going way too small. I think they could have gotten a much bigger levy and polling showed that. And I think that once again, polling is showing that there's a strong voter appetite, so going big is going to produce more results. So my hope would be that City leaders would take notice of that and instead of doing this mealy-mouth thing they do every time where they're - Well, here's three numbers and we'll pick the middle one, they go big and actually get some stuff done.

[00:26:34] Crystal Fincher: Yeah, I think there's absolutely that political case - that it's easier to affirmatively sell something that people want to see, something that they're getting for their money. And just the scale of the challenges that we are facing that can be addressed through this transportation levy, to me, tell me that it's not just politically feasible, but really important to do. We are behind on our 2030 climate goals. We're behind on the ones coming after that. We need to do more. We need better transportation options. Hopefully, they're looking at some acceleration of some projects here. Certainly, it's been frustrating for a lot of people to see delays in projects that were initially expected to come. And we're facing issues like inflation that have increased the price tag. Everyone has seen that happen in every area of their lives. This is no different - things are going to cost a little bit more, and so I think it would be a mistake to not be able to go after the full suite of projects that we could. Certainly maintaining what we have is important, but we are falling further behind and are going to tax our existing resources more if we don't do more, provide more, and fund more. So I hope they wind up going for what is needed and not settle for what seems like - Hey, maybe people will be more likely to support a smaller amount. People just don't like that decision - the overwhelming majority of people just do thumbs up and thumbs down on the idea of that tax. Some people may oppose taxes and oppose this. But for people who are likely to be supportive, it is not going to change whether this passes or fails to go for the full amount, and I hope they understand that.

The last thing I want to talk about today was an update to a story we talked about on last week's week-in-review with Daniel Beekman. We talked about a Snohomish County elementary school and kindergarten who were being really adversely impacted by an unpermitted gravel yard that popped up without any warning to the school next door to them. In addition to just causing a bunch of dust and noise that is making it disruptive to be able to teach and very distracting, it's also seemingly caused some really concerning health concerns from headaches, black snot, coughing fits. It is just really challenging what these kids are going through. It has not escaped my attention or Daniel Beekman's attention, as he reported it, that the population of this school - they have a larger immigrant and refugee population, a larger population of students who are living in poverty than a lot of other schools, and wondering if that is the reason why they seemingly haven't had any kind of support or recourse against this happening, particularly since it's an unpermitted use. This is in unincorporated Snohomish County, so in this situation, it really is up to the county council to determine what, if anything, to do. And their only response so far had been to say - Well, we'll give them some more time to try and bring their use into a permitted use. That has been dragging on while this school and these kids and the staff there have been trying to negotiate their way through this and raise some red flags and ask people to intervene here.

An update came out this week in a follow-up story by Daniel Beekman. The gravel yard responded by sending a cease and desist letter from their attorney to the local school, really just saying - You guys need to stop talking about this. Not saying - Oh, wow. Kids are getting sick and they're having really bad health outcomes. We should see if we are the cause of this and try and stop it. Or, okay, maybe we'll pause this work until we are operating legally in a permitted way. That wasn't it. It's just to try and shut up the people who are complaining about black snot and headaches in kids - that are happening. I just thought that was really an unfortunate response and one that frequently backfires. It appears that it did here and that that is drawing more attention to this whole thing. So that was an update that I wasn't expecting to see, was certainly dismayed to see. I do hope that the county council does take some action here, that the county executive takes some action here to at least provide some recourse to examine what is happening here at the school, to not just let someone, in an unpermitted capacity, negatively impact kids who have to be at school. I think a few people had contacted the county council - hopefully that turns out to be helpful. But very troubling to see and we'll continue to follow along with what is happening there.

And with that, we thank you for listening to Hacks & Wonks on this Friday, February 2nd, 2024. The producer of Hacks & Wonks is Shannon Cheng. Our insightful co-host today is Seattle political reporter and editor of PubliCola, Erica Barnett. You can find Erica on Twitter at @ericacbarnett and on PubliCola.com. You can find Erica everywhere - I see her on all the platforms and getting PubliCola in my email inbox and everything else. You can follow Hacks & Wonks on Twitter at @HacksWonks. You can find me on all platforms at @finchfrii, with two I's at the end. You can catch Hacks & Wonks on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Overcast, or wherever else you get your podcasts - just type "Hacks and Wonks" into the search bar. Be sure to subscribe to the podcast to get the full versions of our Friday week-in-review shows and our Tuesday topical show delivered to your podcast feed. If you like us, leave a review wherever you listen. You can also get a full transcript of this episode and links to the resources referenced in the show at officialhacksandwonks.com and in the podcast episode notes.

Thanks for tuning in - talk to you next time.