Show Me the Data
Below, a letter from Rune Harkestad, Kongsberger Ski Club president, to the State-wide Nordic skiing community:
As I am currently watching the City of SeaTac council meeting on-line right now, I would like to draw a parallel to the system of how our taxes are collected and spent on a State, county and city level, all depending on where you live. Unfortunately, the State's sno-park system doesn’t operate that way. Can any of you imagine what it would be like if, e.g., the Methow were a part of the sno-park system and had to argue for annual funding for the Methow trail system in front of the WRAC? It would have no data as to how much revenue was actually generated from pass purchases in the Methow, and it would be a case of comparing a private grooming operation in the Methow to State-operated grooming operations, where machinery is paid for through the sno-park budget.
It would be a very messy situation, and that is precisely why I am asking all of you to support a request for more data/information from State Parks being made available to all of us. I'm told that a lot of the information I am asking for is available in various binders at State Parks, but what good does that do unless it is readily available so we can make informed and fact-based cases in front of the WRAC for whatever applications we want to submit? I strongly believe, just as each city and county throughout Washington State controls a portion of the revenue generated in its jurisdiction, so should each sno-park area. Whether it's the I-90 corridor, Lake Wenatchee, Mt Spokane, etc., there ought to be some level of local influence and control of the revenue generated in each area and how it is spent in that area.
I welcome a healthy discussion as to what this should look like, but for starters, at least let’s get some more data and facts to form a basis for this discussion.
Thank you for considering our proposed recommendations.