More from Ryan Mello

By Volcano Staff on December 18, 2010


Earlier this week the Volcano published and interview with Tacoma City Councilmember Ryan Mellow conducted by our own Zach Powers. From the Spaceworks Tacoma to the need to get away from auto-centric city planning, Mello covered a lot of ground.

Here's a little bit more from Mello that we saved for a special occasion, as well as a link below to the full interview.

WEEKLY VOLCANO: What will you personally be focused on in 2011? 

RYAN MELLO:One thing I'll be working hard on in 2011 is recruiting some clean energy and clean water technology businesses to be leveraged off of Urban Waters. [The Center for Urban Waters is a brand new 51,000 square-foot office and laboratory building, completed in spring 2010, that houses Tacoma's Environmental Services analytical labs and engineering offices, University of Washington Tacoma research labs, and offices for the Puget Sound Partnership.] I'll be working to recruit businesses to make sure we have the right people and systems in place so that when a business wants to locate and be leveraged off of this investment they know where to go and they can quickly come to market. I think it's important to work on creating jobs with a focus on clean energy and clean technology.

I'll also be working on the discount rates for Tacoma Public Utilities. For the poorest of the poor in our community, as well as the people on the edge, we can't keep having these huge escalations in utility rates. We have folks who absolutely cannot afford it. We have to figure out a discount strategy that allows those folks, who literally have been choosing between heating their home or buying their prescription medication for their blood pressure, or heating their home or paying their mortgage bill, to not have to choose. It's unconscionable to not.

I'll also be working on full implementation of the climate plan, which means full implementation of the Urban Forest Program and more implementation of the Mobility Master Plan. I'll also be continuing to look at our infrastructure. I talk to folks all the time about how horrible our roads are, so I think we need to talk to the community about a possible package on the ballot. Find out if people will invest if they see something in return, to fix the residential roads and the quality of the infrastructure in our neighborhoods and in our business districts.  

LINK: Read the full interview here.