Re: “City, port leaders point to each other as methanol debate escalates” (TNT, 2-4).
The article was a puzzle. Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland said “the (city) council did not bring the methanol plant to Tacoma and is unlikely to ever vote on the project,” and “there is another elected body that has a much bigger role.”
Connie Bacon, president of the Port Commission, tried to ignore any responsibility by saying that the port is merely a landlord: “We have no decision-making authority whatsoever.”
Bacon is ready to approve the building of the plant regardless of the risks. These risks to our environment include using approximately 10.4 million gallons of water per day and releasing toxic chemicals into our air that should not be ignored, even though she puts the risks of pollution on the shoulders of the people with her sophomoric conclusion that “If people are concerned about air pollution, when are you going to stop driving your car?”
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The final straw is Bacon’s willingness to sidestep her elected responsibility, saying, “The real decision-maker on the methanol plant work is the city of Tacoma’s planning department.”
This comes from an elected official who will allow an appointed department of the city to make this immensely critical decision affecting the future of Tacoma.
(Thorpe is a former Tacoma port commissioner.)