The phrase,'Unsound Transit', was coined by the Wall Street Journal to describe Seattle where,"Light Rail Madness eats billions that could otherwise be devoted to truly efficient transportation technologies." The Puget Sound's traffic congestion is a growing cancer on the region's prosperity. This website, captures news and expert opinion about ways to address the crisis. This is not a blog, but a knowledge base, which collects the best articles and presents them in a searchable format. My goal is to arm residents with knowledge so they can champion fact-based, rather than emotional, solutions.


Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Seventh Member of Bellevue City Council appointed

Bellevue council fills open seat

By Ashley Bach

Seattle Times Eastside bureau

Patsy Bonincontri, a project manager at Puget Sound Energy and former chairwoman of the Bellevue Planning Commission, was appointed to the Bellevue City Council on Monday.

Bonincontri, 49, is only the second minority to serve on the council in a city where nearly a third of the residents are minorities.

She was born in Hong Kong, moved to the U.S. for college and lived on the East Coast and in Japan before moving to Bellevue with her family 16 years ago.

She is an architect by training, one skill that will be particularly useful in fast-growing Bellevue, where more than a dozen cranes dot the skyline, council members said.

She was appointed by the council to replace Connie Marshall, who resigned in January. Bonincontri will fill the rest of Marshall's term, which ends in late 2009, and said she will probably run for election to the position next year.

She was one of 21 people who applied to replace Marshall and one of seven finalists interviewed by the council last month.

Former council member Mike Creighton and Jennifer Robertson, chairwoman of the Planning Commission, also received votes from council members on Monday. Bonincontri received a majority after council member John Chelminiak switched his allegiance from Robertson and joined Grant Degginger, Claudia Balducci and Conrad Lee in supporting Bonincontri.

In an interview Tuesday, Bonincontri said she wants to protect the city's neighborhoods amid heavy growth downtown and nurture the city's small businesses, especially among the growing immigrant communities.

"We are moving toward a global economy," she said. "... The diversity we have is a great advantage."

All seven finalists were well qualified for the job, but Bonincontri was female, an immigrant who had lived in other countries and had expertise in architecture and design, council members said Monday. The council includes five men, three attorneys and one other minority member, Lee.

"We have the opportunity here to put somebody on the council who has a different perspective than the rest of us sitting here," Balducci said.

Bonincontri is expected to join the council at its next meeting, on April 7.

Ashley Bach: 206-464-2567 or

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