Category Archives: media

Local reporters and editors request City Auditor to investigate city officials’ use of private email accounts

Today, several local reporters and editors, including myself, sent a joint letter to the City Auditor requesting an investigation into city officials’ practices of using private email accounts and other private electronic media to conduct city business. Below is the letter we sent, along with the attachments demonstrating the extent of the issue.

The City Auditor reports to the City Council, an arrangement that usually is well-suited to the Council’s oversight responsibilities over the executive branch. In this case, however, the issue implicates several (if not all) City Council members and their staff, as well as the Mayor’s office. Since there is a pending lawsuit that addresses the issue of city officials conducting business through private channels, it is unlikely that the Council or the Mayor will weigh in on the issue or request the Auditor to spend time investigating this. However, the Auditor’s Office is empowered to conduct its own self-directed investigations, so it can decide to do this on its own.

I’m going to make an unusual request here: if you believe this is an important issue, please send an email to City Auditor David Jones, davidg.jones@seattle.gov, asking him to conduct an investigation.

Continue reading Local reporters and editors request City Auditor to investigate city officials’ use of private email accounts

What you should be reading

Welcome to all the new readers! Yesterday was a crazy day here at SCC Insight, but I’m thrilled and humbled by all the new attention and for all the words of support.

I am also humbled to be in the company of a number of very talented writers and journalists who also cover Seattle city government, who have been doing this for years (unlike me, the newcomer) and have developed keen insight and intuition for the topic. I thought it might be helpful to share with you a list of my colleagues so you can follow their writing as well as mine. I don’t always agree with them (and they certainly don’t all agree with each other, or with me), but I always read everything they write and it makes me better informed. Together they represent a unique, diverse and essential collection of viewpoints and opinions that broadens our city’s dialogue. I encourage you to read them all.

Continue reading What you should be reading

Council doubles down on local broadcast news resolution

Through the time I’ve been writing about the City Council, I’ve developed enormous respect for our nine City Council members. They are, by all measures, dedicated public servants who work long hours and are sincerely trying to do the right thing for Seattle and its citizens. They wrestle with difficult, often seemingly intractable, problems to try to find compassionate solutions that help people. Like the rest of us, they have flaws, they make mistakes, they’re not perfect — and while we should hold them to a high standard, that standard shouldn’t be perfection.

But today I lost some of my respect for several of those City Council members.

Continue reading Council doubles down on local broadcast news resolution

Resolution on broadcast TV news jobs is an embarrassment

On Wednesday the Council’s Gender Equity, Safe Communities and New Americans Committee considered a resolution proposed by Council members Kshama Sawant and Lisa Herbold that throws its support behind unionized broadcast TV news staff in their contract negotiation with Tegna, the parent company of KING 5. It’s a horrible, indefensible piece of legislation.

Continue reading Resolution on broadcast TV news jobs is an embarrassment