Seattle City Councilmember Bruce Harrell

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Archive for February, 2009

Feb 27 2009

Turn in Your Books, Recycle Your CFLs:
A New Idea and Approach

Since 2006 more than 300 million Compact Fluorescent Light (CFL) bulbs have been purchased in our country. In addition, Seattle City Light recently announced that its “Twist and Save” program has garnered sales of over 1 million CFLs locally. The number of people using CFLs will continue to rise as the US Congress passed the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA) which lays out performance thresholds that incandescent bulbs simply do not meet. To be clear, this does not ban the sale of incandescent bulbs. If an incandescent bulb were produced that was able to meet the threshold, its use would not be prohibited.

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Feb 25 2009

Welcome home, Junior!

Published by under Seattle Sports

I am writing today, not about City Hall or politics of any sort. I am writing today to share my thoughts and excitement of Ken Griffey Jr.’s return to the Seattle Mariners. Lord knows that we were in dire need of a good sports story in our town. Our basketball team has been relocated after being part of our culture for decades, the Seahawks only won four games, the Mariners lost 101 games last year, and Husky football fell off the face of the earth. Baseball fans of Seattle needed this. I remember the Spider Man catches, the sweet swing, and the smile and obvious love of the game he showed. Sure, he is 39 years old and is not the player he once was, but that sweet swing is still there, along with his natural ability to knock it into the seats. The Mariners are a team that is not projected to do well this year, but the return of Jr. gives us a reason to pay attention. We all know what a single swing of his bat can do.

The sports atmosphere in 2009 is already much better than 2008 with Griffey’s return and the exciting Husky basketball team playing for the Pac-10 championship.

Welcome home Junior, we are glad to have you back where you started.

Photo credit: AP Photo/Elaine Thompson

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Feb 17 2009

Project Share – Warm Hearts, Warm Homes

On February 12, 2009, I visited City Light at the Seattle Municipal Tower for an event to promote Project Share, called Warm Hearts, Warm Homes. Project Share is a City Light sponsored program that solicits voluntary donations from its ratepayers to be distributed to low income residents unable to pay their power bill. During my lunch break, I joined the festivities by placing my donation to the Project Share Fund along with many other city employees doing the same thing. I have been told that the drive garnered more than $2,500 in employee donations. This money will help keep the lights and heat on for people in need. Nice work fellow employees!

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Feb 12 2009

Seattle City Light 2009 Work Plan

Having a focused work plan at the beginning of each year is critical toward effective committee work. As you know, the Energy and Technology Committee (ETC) that I chair, oversees City Light. As a policy leader for City Light, I view this organization as more than a public power utility. These times demand that we adjust our thinking. I am suggesting that we view the public utility as a regional strategic tool for a green economy; an economic driver; a job creator; and as a competitive advantage for Seattle in this world economy. From this vantage point then, we developed an aggressive work plan for the Utility, which I believe will enhance the utility’s success, generate job growth, address environmental sustainability issues, prioritize Capital Improvement needs, and most importantly, ensure cost effective and reliable power.

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Feb 11 2009

Digital Television Transition Update

On Thursday, February 5, 2009, Congress delayed the digital television transition until June 12, 2009. The bill allows broadcasting stations to cease analog transmission at any date between Feb. 17th (original date) and June 12th (new date). Many of the major broadcasting stations have made the decision to cease analog broadcast on June 12th instead of the original Feb. 17th date, allowing more time for those who are not prepared.

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Feb 07 2009

Pend Oreille County Impact Payments

The Seattle Times printed an article in the February 4th edition discussing the City Light hydroelectric facility in Pend Oreille County. This is a very important facility to the citizens of Seattle, as 40 percent of our clean power derives from this location. Our other hydroelectric facilities on the Skagit River in Whatcom County produce 20.5 percent of our City’s power. It is the clean power produced by these facilities that make it possible for City Light customers to have the lowest rates in the country (relatively speaking). The “meat” of the story in the The Times is that Pend Oreille County is seeking triple the amount which it is already paid by City Light as a result of “impact payments” it is required to make. Following is an explanation of how the impact agreements work and my thoughts on the issue.

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