Investing in Infrastructure, Beyond Your Term in Office

Ron Sims is an example many should look to emulate.

by Eric Holdeman / July 22, 2019

Ron Sims was the King County executive for most of my term as the King County Emergency Management director. What I loved about him was he was and remains a visionary leader who sees what needs to be done and then has the moral courage to move forward on ideas that might not be popular at the time.

Specifically, the one item I'll call out here is support and the political capital that he invested to have the Brightwater Sewage Treatment. Plant constructed--before we ran out of capacity in the Central Puget Sound. If he had not been the champion for its construction all the new development, jobs and commerce that has come to the Seattle region would not have happened because the two existing plants were at or near capacity. 

$1.8B projects are not popular items to propose and see through to being funded. Construction and implementation was not accomplished until after his term in office. Thus, he invested in providing a future need at some political cost to him personally. 

We need more of this behavior in our elected and senior appointed officials. We have to get out of the "fix on failure" approach we have to critical infrastructure. Be a Ron Sims and make a difference for future generations. Care more about the future than your own personal political career. 

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