As a longtime Kennewick resident, I've seen us quickly grow into the largest city in the region. During the past 10 years, our population has grown by 19,000 people. More and more businesses continue to come to our city. The progress we have made as a city does not come without some challenges.
In those 10 years, our police department has had a net gain of only one officer. The ratio of police officers per 1,000 residents has declined through the years and remains under the state average. Gangs continue to cause problems. It seems like we constantly read about gang shootings.
The public safety sales tax will pay for 15 additional officers for the Kennewick Police Department. It will pay for crime and gang prevention programs. It will keep the Metro Drug Task Force operational and continue our drug courts. It will create a mental health court.
All of this will cost us only three cents for every $10 worth of items purchased. It's ironic that even criminals and gang members will help pay for these programs. It makes total sense to me to support this ballot measure.
WES DOOR, Kennewick