Our Voice: Thumbs up and down to Gov. Inslee’s decisions

Transparent transportation

To Ben Franklin Transit for a quick and public apology. Humble pie always goes down a little easier when it’s served warm.

Chance Rogers was trying to board a transit bus with a dog he uses as a service animal. The driver disagreed and a scuffle ensued.

It’s an unfortunate incident for the driver, who has been disciplined; and for the rider, who suffered social anxiety even before this event.

But Ben Franklin Transit was quick to issue an apology. We respect that.

In every instance of human interaction there is the possibility of things going wrong. Our hats are off to a public agency trying to make the situation right.

Local leaders

To Gov. Inslee’s recent appointment of Sherry Armijo and Robert Michael Schwenk.

Armijo has been appointed for a five-year term to the Columbia Basin College board of trustees.

Schwenk will serve a four-year term on the state’s Life Sciences Discovery board.

They are both wise choices and well-suited to their tasks.

Schwenk is a recognized and respected name in this community. He was the Tri-Citian of the Year in 2008 and has been making things happen in the Mid-Columbia for more than 35 years as a researcher and manager at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and community volunteer. The board he serves on distributes grant money to projects around the state that are innovative in the health field.

Armijo attended CBC in the mid-1980s and now sits on the board of trustees. The path that has led between these two points on her life’s path is interesting and inspiring, and the Tri-Cities is a better place for her journey, especially in the field of education. Through her contribution as a founding member of the Hispanic Academic Achievers Program, thousands of students have been encouraged to pursue higher education and many have been enabled to finance those dreams with scholarship money.

Silence not golden

To Gov. Inslee’s decision to keep his opinion of Initiative 1351 to himself.

Most state officials, especially those involved in the budgeting process, know that I-1351 is a “budget buster.” Many have openly said so. Several who visited with us during the election season — both Republicasn and Democrats — are on the record as saying so.

Inslee apparently agrees with these folks, but says he kept his opinion on the matter quiet because he didn’t want to sway the vote. But on election night, he did say that he voted against the measure.

It leaves us scratching our heads that the highest elected official of the state — a man who by constitutional mandate must submit a balanced budget each year — can see a potential financial crisis for the state and not say anything. That’s not leadership.