Summer Primary on tap as third candidate announces plan to run for Snoqualmie mayor

It looks like there will be a summer primary when it comes to deciding the next Mayor of Snoqualmie.

Current City Council member Brad Toft announced that he will  be running for Mayor of the City of Snoqualmie in 2017 and filed with King County Elections on May 15th.  Toft is the third person to throw his hat into the mayor’s race ring. Former mayor Fuzzy Fletcher and incumbent Matt Larson are also running.

Via press release Toft said his priorities as a candidate “are creating a vision for the future of city, increased economic development efforts, and improved community outreach. In addition to those priorities, he promises as Mayor to take a leadership role with our youth and in public education.”

“With 12 years of the same leadership, people want a choice in this year’s election. It’s time for a new chapter in the City of Snoqualmie.” Toft said.  His campaign website also launched at www.bradtoftformayor.com

The top two vote getters in the August 1st [primary] election will move onto the November general election. See King County Elections for more details.

 

Comments

  1. Sue Mackey says:

    Brad, as a councilman, have you demonstrated your advocacy for the community, a fix for public education and economic development that will divert tax increases away from property owners? Is there evidence to support that you’ve demonstrated the above from your voting record as a councilman? If not elected, will you pursue these same passions and professed know how as a councilman?

    • Sue, you can visit my campaign website to learn more about my record as a councilman, and what I will do as Mayor. The things I stand for as a candidate will not change, whatever the office I hold.

  2. Brad voted for the Snoqualmie Ridge Hotel amendments knowing that property owners within 500 feet had not been notified by mail according to municipal code.

    • I have offered to make myself available in person to Ms. Shepard to hear her views and concerns on the hotel and other development in Snoqualmie. She promptly declined. This statement posted here is one example of several, where Shepard makes statements with a sliver of truth, and twists them in a self-serving manner. It does not serve her cause or the community well.

      • Dana Hubanks says:

        Attacking someone (a voter, a citizen) because they declined to meet with you in person fails to take into account a human being’s multiplistic reasons for not wanting to accept such an invitation. Publicly attacking a concerned citizen for simply making a factual statement certainly does nothing to instill a sense of comfort in your constituency. In my opinion, I would feel hesitant to meet one-on-one with a public official who is so quick to personally attack a voter, and a neighbor.

        • Dana and Richard, I am happy to expand on my comment for the purpose of clarity. The statement by Ms Shepard in the comment section of this article “Brad voted for the Snoqualmie Ridge hotel amendments knowing that property owners within 500 feet had not been notified by mail according to municipal code” is partially true and partially false. While it is true that I voted for the amendments, it was after the vote that I learned through the city’s own acknowledgment that it failed to meet its own standard for notification. Ms Shepard never reached out to me to ask when I knew that was the case.

          The voices that are concerned about growth in our city are valid ones. They should be active in our process and make their concerns known by whatever process or media is available. It is my opinion that those same people should be respectful and make statements that are factual. That principle is one that our citizens in Snoqualmie hold strongly to, and one that I will uphold if elected Mayor. You accuse me of attacking, but I am standing for inclusion and civility in our public process.

          In that spirit of inclusion, you’re are welcome to have the last word here, and my invitation to meet with your group still stands.

          • Dana Hubanks says:

            First of all, I’m not a member of Snoqualmie 1st. So, I’m speaking as an independent citizen and resident. Second of all, as a City official, you are relied upon by citizens and residents to ensure that due process is followed before votes are cast on matters that greatly impact those same voters and residents. You represent us. Voting on something without first receiving a solid guarantee that all concerned parties (especially immediate, proximal parties) have been alerted of the decision making process is irresponsible. Especially since the City has clearly communicated the reality that these effected residents have no recourse now that the vote has been cast and the decision has been made, this further highlights how important it was for all City Council members to advocate for the residents they represent *prior* to casting their votes. This advocacy did not occur. And where does that leave those most effected? Up the creek.

          • Richard Scheel says:

            Brad, you say that you did not know about the city’s failure to notify property owners until after the vote. However, during the public hearing before the vote, Peggy gave a PowerPoint presentation that clearly stated on slides 10 and 11 that the property owners had not been notified. The slides showed the city’s Certificate of Mailing which included the list of addresses that the notice was sent to, plus a map from King County’s “iMap” property mapping web site that showed the properties within 500 feet. You and the other Council members were given the information before the vote.

            Even if you doubted the accuracy of the information, the Council should have investigated before proceeding with the vote.

  3. Richard Scheel says:

    Brad was also one of the all-in-unison voices on the Council who as part of the hotel vote approved changing the existing zoning requirement of a 50 foot setback from the property line to only a 15 foot “average” setback. This brings the rear wall of the hotel up to approximately the position of the 60 foot tall trees that currently line that who section of the parkway. All of we residents of the city will now get to look at an up-close 60 foot tall wall, rather than 60 foot tall trees. There was no reason for Brad and the rest of the council to grant that request from the developer. They just thought they know better than the residents regarding what is best for us – regardless of the vast majority of resident testimony at both the planning commission and the city council, which opposed giving the developer this free gift.

  4. Richard Scheel says:

    Brad, you have made a vague and unsubstantiated accusation against Peggy. What can you point to that is inaccurate or twisted in what she said? You DID vote for the hotel amendments, and you DID know about the property owners not being notified. Peggy very plainly presented the information about the lack of notification in her presentation to the Council at the public hearing before the vote. Don’t make false accusations!

    • Richard, I responded to Dana’s post and included you as the recipient, so I hope you will read that. I have made no false statement. Peggy’s comment about me indicates I either had full knowledge that the citizens had not been properly noticed, or that I did not care to inquire. Neither are true, and I am entitled to say so.

      I did ask the question prior to the meeting of staff if citizens had been adequately notified, and was assured that they were. Later, upon staff review, thanks to your group’s persistence, it was acknowledged that the notice radius was not properly applied.

      I will go back to my very first comment. You, Peggy and others may have some valid concerns about the effects of growth. The vigor of your concerns did bring to light a process problem with the city that will be remedied. However, when people make misstatements put forward as fact with the intention to malign others, it’s counterproductive to thier cause. Peggy’s presentation to the council included other misrepresentations, which did, in my mind, undermine her credibility. One of those was the rendering of the “yellow wall” representation of the hotel building.

      All of this said, I respect your position and concerns about the effects of growth. I don’t think we need to be enemies over it, even If views differ. I would love to see our city have a vigorous debate about the future of Snoqualmie, and if I am elected Mayor we will have that. My invitation to you and others is open if you would like to sit down and meet. These comment forums are good for the public discourse, but face to face discussion is a better way to create understanding.

  5. Richard Scheel says:

    Brad, I did read your other response.

    Regarding your last comment about face to face discussion, I prefer to have the discussion out in the open where any interested resident can see what we are saying. I think it is useful information for voters. A few points about your most recent post:

    A) The “yellow wall” rendering was simply the best we could produce, since we are not professional artists and can’t afford one. We have asked multiple times for a more accurate drawing, and none has been provided, so this is still the most accurate image of what the hotel will look like in the context of the homes across the street. We would welcome such an in-context image from the developer. I understand that any developer may not want to provide images that show the least flattering views of their project, but the affected residents (both those living across the street, and all of us in whose city this project will be built) need to see what this hotel will look like in context of the surroundings. If the developer provides such an image, we would be happy to replace our best-effort image with a more accurate one.
    B) Even if our image was not professional quality, it should not affect how you consider the other information in the presentation – in particular the failure to notify.
    C) You mention “intention to malign”. How can you claim to know our intention? We are simply bringing the Snoqualmie community’s attention to the actual actions of the Council and city administration.
    D) In your first paragraph you take issue with Peggy’s comment. You say it “indicates I either had full knowledge that the citizens had not been properly noticed, or that I did not care to inquire”. If you re-read her comment, you will see that she said that you voted for the amendments (true) knowing that property owners were not notified. Perhaps she could have phrased “knowing” a bit more precisely as ” having been provided with concrete information”. She didn’t say that at the time of the vote you had knowledge that had been investigated and confirmed by city staff (which came a few days later). She also didn’t phrase it as “had full knowledge” (as you worded it), which has more of a flavor of being fully and independently verified. She also said nothing about your intent. However, a reasonable observer might assume that you and the other Council members “did not care to inquire” (your words), since the Council voted unanimously to approve the amendments after hearing concrete information about the notification violation. No one on the Council even suggested investigating before voting on what the city tells us is an action that cannot be reversed.

    • Richard, I’m running for Mayor because I would run the city different than our current administration. There is culture and process that needs to change at City Hall. And there are issues in addition to development that are priorities to me because I have heard the frustrations of our citizens. I’ve made my points on Peggy’s comment, and think you’ve respectfully made yours. There’s no doubt we disagree on some things. So, leaving you with the last word here, and expect we will have a chance to communicate again.

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