Mayoral candidate: Seattle isn’t growing in a strategic way

Apr 25, 2017, 5:34 AM | Updated: 6:18 pm
Nikkita Oliver. (Zorn Taylor)
(Zorn Taylor)

Seattle mayoral candidate Nikkita Oliver says growth isn’t bad, but the Emerald City isn’t doing so in a “strategic way.”

The community organizer, slam poet, and boxer with a law degree says that’s at least what she chooses to believe.

“If I don’t believe it’s a lack of vision, then it looks intentional that we’ve allowed cash-poor black and brown folks to be pushed out of their communities,” she told Seattle’s Morning News.

What the city needs right now, she says, is a strategy for building affordable housing, a definition of affordable housing, and improved access to jobs and opportunities for people in lower income brackets, so they may remain in the city.

“So folks can have the sort of income that allows them to live here and stay in the neighborhoods that they built up …” she said.

RELATED: Who is running against Mayor Ed Murray

Seattle and King County governments face the challenge of balancing a booming economy that favors high-paid workers in the tech industry, with the need to keep the area affordable for thousands more. It’s become such a dire need that the county recently announcedan effort to establish a Regional Affordable Housing Task Force.

“Nearly 50,000 households earning minimum wage are paying over 50 percent of their income towards their housing needs,” King County Executive Dow Constantine wrote in a letter.

Even businesses are complaining of the high costs.

Business owner: Seattle is ‘way past’ the point of affordability

Oliver says the city needs to be willing to build even more housing without relying on the private market. However, she says that can be done while preserving the identity of Seattle’s neighborhoods.

“There’s a lot of city property that could become affordable housing,” she said.

Oliver admits that she, like fellow mayoral candidates Mayor Ed Murray and former Mayor Mike McGinn, supports the idea of a city income tax.

“I believe all Seattlites are invested in seeing it as a place we can all live,” she said. She added that she believes wealthier people in the city would support an income tax to ensure the city remains a place where “everyone has the right to stay.”

Local News

Nicole Jennings

PETA storms UW over treatment of medical research monkeys on first day of classes

It was all part of a protest by PETA and the Northwest Animal Rights Network against UW's Northwest Center for Primate Research.
22 hours ago
Micki Gamez

Overgrown vegetation no match for SDOT’s eco-friendly contractors … goats!  

"They are an environmentally friendly and sustainable way to control vegetation on public land."
22 hours ago
Charlie Harger

58-year-old baseball umpire charged with sexual abuse of a minor turns himself in

Casey McNerthney with the prosecutor's office said investigators believe Wearmouth "groomed" the girl for a period of time on social media.
22 hours ago
Crime Handcuffs...
Hanna Scott

Man accused of threatening to stab Renton bartender pleads not guilty

Carlos Perez pled not guilty at an arraignment this week for reportedly threatening to stab a Renton bartender earlier this month.
22 hours ago
SUV pulled from ditch in Bothell...
Shawn Garrett, KIRO 7 News

Roads are slick! SUV pulled from ditch in Bothell

An SUV was lifted out of a ditch in Bothell on Wednesday after the light showers left the roads slippery in Western Washington.
22 hours ago
capacity magazine...
Hanna Scott

Trial date set for late 2023 over large capacity magazine ban in Washington state

A federal judge has scheduled a trial in the legal challenge to Washington State’s new ban on high-capacity magazines for late 2023.
22 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
Swedish Cyberknife 900x506...

June is Men’s Health Month: Here’s Why It’s Important To Speak About Your Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, men in the United States, on average, die five years earlier than women.

Anacortes – A Must Visit Summertime Destination

While Anacortes is certainly on the way to the San Juan Islands (SJI), it is not just a destination to get to the ferry… Anacortes is a destination in and of itself!

Ready for your 2022 Alaskan Adventure with Celebrity Cruises?

Celebrity Cruises SPONSORED — A round-trip Alaska cruise from Seattle is an amazing treat for you and a loved one. Not only are you able to see and explore some of the most incredible and visually appealing natural sights on the planet, but you’re also able to relax and re-energize while aboard a luxury cruise […]
Mayoral candidate: Seattle isn’t growing in a strategic way