Each candidate running for the Burien City Council Aug. 1, 2023 Primary Election was asked ten questions by The B-Town Blog, covering topics like their reasons for wanting to serve on the council, what they think about current issues in the city, and what kind of solutions they have.
The following responses to our 10th and final question in our series are from candidates for Position 4, which is currently filled by Kevin Schilling, who is running for reelection.
Ballots are due by 8 p.m. this Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2023.
NOTE: Candidates are listed in order as per the King County Elections online Voters Guide website. Photos and links are to/from each candidate’s profile on the same website.
How would you enhance Burien’s environmental sustainability and resilience?
“Burien is known for our beautiful parks and accessible shoreline. I will continue to be an advocate for supporting and growing both in our community. That’s why during my first term on City Council, I voted in favor of budgets that fully funded our parks department, invested in green space and landslide prevention dollars. Additionally, on City Council, I was one of the few councilmembers that voted against tree removal without a plan to ensure that we replace each tree that we remove.
“Directing city operations to be cleaner and renewable is also important. That’s why I voted in favor of our city’s climate action plan, as well as worked with the Highline School District solar project team to learn best practices of getting solar in as many communities as we can. We can work to expand opportunities for homeowners and businesses to choose cleaner energy options with investments from the state and federal government, like solar panels.
“I’m also an advocate for expanding public transportation. I’ve pushed the state legislature for more funding to expand public transportation options in Burien. Alongside this, I’ve been an advocate for growing the availability of electric vehicle charging stations, to give electric vehicle drivers more options for charging in their community. Common-sense investments in Burien’s energy future help our resiliency as a city.
“A resilient community requires a safe, prosperous, and equitable community. In my first term, I’ve shown I can build that strong foundation for Burien. With your support, I’d be honored to continue this important work.”
“We need to develop more green spaces throughout the city by:
- “Requiring rooftop gardens in newer high-rise buildings and development projects
- “Adding community “well-kept” gardens to encourage more sustainable farming practices and programs. This can also create jobs and workforce development
- “Create small neighborhood parks (1/2 – 1 acre or less) similar to Dottie Harper Park, Eagle Landing Park, Seahurst Park, Chelsea Park, Lake Burien School Memorial Park
- “Add swings
- “Big toys
- “Recreational activities in these parks
- “Create bike lanes
- “Create walkable paths
- “Increase the number of EV charging stations
- “Retrofit older buildings, add necessary insulation, solar panels and A/C to older buildings
- “Require newer buildings to be equipped and built with renewal and sustainable materials such as, wind, geothermal, biomass and solar.”
“The climate emergency is already here.
“We need all hands on deck, in our partnerships with experts, advocates, and policymakers at every level: city, county, state and federal, as well as global targets for mitigating the harm climate change is bringing. Seeing the global youth movements in solidarity and advocacy for a clean and livable planet is inspiring, but we need to take stronger action in our city as well. A functioning democracy needs to listen to those voices as they take to the ballot box. The housing emergency is only likely to get worse, as more climate refugees and others with unstable access to secure, available, affordable housing continue to cause our community to grow. The public’s safety is in the public’s hands, through the choices and policies we enact.
“Our city deserves leadership that is ready to face our community’s issues, both those of today and those of the future, with clarity of purpose and values.”
EDITOR’S NOTE: Click here to read answers to this same question by candidates for Burien City Council, Position No. 2.
To read all responses to our 10 questions of candidates on the Aug. 1 Primary ballot, click here.