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New assessor, more openness

In February 2009 I started a challenge to my 2008 property assessment. Ralph Baker was assessor. In February 2009 I asked at the assessor desk for policies and procedures in an appeal and documentation to support the assessment. Nothing!

I followed this verbal request with written requests to my assigned appraiser. Nothing!

I followed this with written requests to Mr. Baker. Nothing!

In April I directed the request through the public records officer, James Emacio. Finally, something! This was followed by records/information requests citing the Revised Code of Washington. Maybe I got something, maybe I didn’t.

I’ve requested support for this assessment repeatedly since February 2009. Only since Mr. Baker lost the election has some of the information he withheld been released. Why was it withheld? Was this illegal? Does this support Mr. Baker’s “I was committed to public service openness and transparency”? I do not know how Vicki Horton will be as assessor, but Mr. Baker is the reason public record laws were enacted.

The state Public Records Act says the people of this state do not yield their sovereignty to the agencies that serve them. Mr. Baker repeatedly showed he did not honor this law.

P.N. Strand

Nine Mile Falls


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