Didja know there is such a thing as the University Place Historical Society and they meet on the second Wednesday of the month in the Library at 7:00 p.m. If you have any interest in the history of our unique little city, you ought to stop in. Cindy Bonaro is the current president and she can be reached 565-9447.
What DO you know about U.P. history? Try this one out for size (We’ll answer it in the next edition of the blog)  WHO WAS THE FIRST FIRE CHIEF WITH THE UNIVERSITY PLACE FIRE DEPARTMENT?  He may also have been in the position the longest, I think. He took the job in 1941 and was the chief for about two decades.  So, who was he?  And did anyone know him or even meet him?  (I remember him well but I’ll explain in the next blog.)  Now, who has the answer?

What the big news about February 12, 2011 in University Place?  Don’t know?  Read on…

For every dollar of property tax collected in University Place:

44 cents goes to SCHOOLS

21 cents goes to Fire and Emergency Medical Services

15 cents goes to the State of Washington

8 cents goes to Pierce County

8 cents goes to the City of University Place

3 cents goes to the Library and finally,

1 cents goes to the Port of Tacoma.

So, the city of U.P. actually only gets 8 cents out of every dollar paid in property tax, here.  Surprised?

All across our nation cities are making cuts.  Staffing, programs, you name it. They’re getting cut due to economic pressures to include lack of funding, of course.  For example, our police operations are down to only two officers per shift.  (What can you do with that?)  According to our new Police Chief Rusty Wilder, this level significantly limits the ability of officers to do follow up work on cases along with any proactive police work. 

Try these numbers on for size.  “In 2009, there were 17,726 calls for service with 22 patrol deputies which breaks down to 806 calls per officer per year.  Then in 2010 there were 13,031 calls for service (so far) with 15 deputies which breaks down into 869 calls each. The 2010 projected total calls for service to University Place is 18, 929 which breaks down into 1,329 calls for each of the 15 officers.

Didja know that you have a mayor who WANTS to hear from you?  If you want to write a quick compliment about something you notice is going right with the city or you want to chat about a problem or perhaps you have a suggestion…drop our mayor a note and I think you may just be surprised.  dklosowski@CityofUP.com

So, what’s on your schedule for next weekend? Well, whatever it is, you’ll be an hour early if you don’t remember to FALL BACK Sunday, November 7th?  The end of daylight savings time ushers in the unofficial beginning of the Pacific Northwest – I’m Depressed As Hell and I Ain’t Gonna Take It Any More season of the year.   I call it the Woody Allen season.  The fact is that Woody was diagnosed as clinically depressed long before clinical depression became one of those overused cliché diagnosis but the key here is what he does about it.  He, very successfully uses humor to battle depression. I can’t think of anyone who has used it more effectively than old Woody.  Bottom line from where I sit is simply this. Yes, the Pacific Northwest annually endures a depressing, cloudy, rain-soaked winter and it gets people down. I love bright sun-filled summer days as much as anyone but when it comes to the winter doldrums around here,  I’ve always thought, you have a choice. I chose humor.  I may not look to Woody Allen’s life as a great role model but I energetically adopt his approach to depression.  I laugh about it. I laugh around and through it and eventually I laugh my way out of it. There is so very much humor around us every day, if we simply keep one eye open for it.  My prescription battles my blues very effectively.  Ask anyone who knows me.  “Don’t worry. Be happy.”, as Bobbie McFerrin says.   I whistle a lot.  Ya just don’t whistle when you’re depressed.  Or better put, how can you be depressed when you’re whistling?

February 12th, 2011?  That’s the announced grand opening of the new Library.  You KNOW we’re going to be talking more about THAT as the date approaches.  But didja know you can ADOPT A BOOK?   It’s a way of helping stock the shelves of the new library and dedicating the book to someone in particular.  I think I will see about adopting a couple of books in my grandsons’ names.  Maybe a couple of their favorites.  How do you do it and how do you get in touch with their capital campaign? (Speaking of helping the new library!)  Here you go…  http://www.piercecountylibrary.org/about-us/foundation/Default.htm

Or you can catch up with them on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pages/University-Place-Library-Campaign/131952136818898

As a REALTOR and on behalf of homeowners, I am constantly reminding folks that when it comes time to sell, your biggest enemy frequently is DEFERRED MAINTENANCE.  The things we put off that get worse and worse because we DO put them off.  For example, if the gutter is sagging today and we don’t do a thing about it, a year from now we decide to put our home up for sale but first we have to replace that gutter that fell off the house.  Yes, I did say “Replace” ($$$$$) because it’s past the stage where you could have just repaired it ($).  Deferred Maintenance.  Seasonal changes in our environment also drive a recurring need for home maintenance and now is a great time to be doing something about things like uninsulated water pipes.  If you have a hose bib (external faucet) for example. Is the supply line to that hose bib a dedicated pipe? Is it insulated?  Should it be drained and shut off for the season?  Or should you plan on enjoying an indoor ceiling waterfall in my garage like I did a few winter’s back?

If you’ve got trees around the house that are currently doing their annual strip tease, maybe it’s time to take a peak in your gutters to make sure they are not ready to clog up with all of the guck that was once the big green leaves which shaded your home so nicely from the summer sun.

The Climate Prediction Center and the Farmer’s Almanac are both forecasting this fall and early winter to be wetter than usual for our area…aka, lots of rain. 

When weeks like this hit, it’s a great time to watch the basement and even your crawl space for the formation of everything from minor leaks to “Lake Seep-through-walls”.  Speaking of deferred maintenance biting a home seller in the rear region, nothing does it quite like standing water in your crawl space or the mold and smell and damages that come from  a leaky basement.  This is the time of year that those problems most often show themselves.  Watch for them.  And speaking of leaks under the house, does the ground around your home slope downward TO the house or does is slope downward AWAY from your structure.  That can be the biggest reason why you have water under the house.  Our gardens or lawns or whatever is right around our homes for about 10 feet or so, should slope AWAY from our homes.  The reason is obvious.  Take a walk around your home and don’t be surprised if you ARE surprised.

I have tried not to be a hound about bugging you to vote, this year.  Why not, when I normally do?  Because, as I am sure you’ve noticed, the water cooler talk around the elections  this time around seems to be the disgust so many of us are feeling, not about the elections themselves but about the insulting, low-brain, repugnant political attack ads we’re all being bombarded with.  I really don’t know how they could get much worse.  Now, we can think about the political parties and the control they have over so many of those ads when it comes time to place blame or we can watch for the identification of the special interest groups behind so many of the ads and point at them.  We could even blame the TV stations as they rake in the HUGE monetary rewards for cramming so many of them down our throats but we would be way off target, I think, in terms of where the blame actually lies.  Try this on for size.  Every time another political candidate voices “I’m Joe S0-an-so and I approved this ad.” and then it delivers attacks and smears and half-truths, and distortions and a degree of negativism that would even depress Woody, isn’t that a great time to grab your pencil and pad of paper and write down one more name of a candidate you refuse to support?  Before you give that option much thought, Yes, you will find yourself without a horse to back in several races.  For example, the Rossi-Murray race for the senate.  I scratched both of them out weeks ago.  Those are some of the very worst ads out there and they both have stood up and said “I approve this.”   Nope.  Not getting my support.   Politicians who decide that it’s just fine to conduct such attack campaigns are politicians who forgot how to take the high road.  Those are also the politicos who have forgotten how to work with others and get done the maximum they can for their constituents.  ANY, yes, ANY political candidate can refuse to conduct such a campaign.  Just imagine if, Patty Murray, cited simply as an example, had seen the Rossi campaign ads attracting her and instead of exchanging punches with the Republicans, she simply said to her campaign manager, “No” I won’t lower myself to that level.  I won’t sling mud.  I will, instead talk about the good things I’ve done and the good things I’m doing and the good things I want to do.  I will take the high road.   Just imagine how soon the tone of the overall campaign would have shifted to something very different than we have and are experiencing.  Just think of how it could actually be focused on ISSUES instead of mud.  We might actually find out what the candidates stand for!  Ha!  What a refreshing change that would be, don’t ya think?  So, yes, I’m voting this year but there are races and initiatives that I’m not going anywhere near just because of all of the crap they’ve spewed on radio, TV, in print and all around me, all Fall.  I won’t condone it.  Now, my vote and those of people who think like this will be missed by the candidates and issues we would have supported but you know what?  From where I sit, they don’t deserve ’em!

Additionally, you may not be like me and that’s fine.  By that I mean, I go one more step. I drop those candidates a note saying, “I was intending to support you but because of your personal endorsement of the disgusting ad campaign waged against your opponent, you’ve lost me vote and, oh, by the way, my wife’s vote, too!  Next time, if there is one, maybe you’ll consider taking the high road.  If you do, I bet your opponent gets the hint and follows.  Think about it.”

And as for all of you, be well…

PATMADDOCK   Coldwell Banker Bain REALTORS   3560 Bridgeport Way West,  University Place 98466                                                                                                                                  (253)682-1182



So, just who IS this guy?

Pat’s been a top producer with Coldwell Banker Bain REALTORS in University Place and he was the 2007 President of the Tacoma-Pierce County Association of REALTORS as well as a 2009 Vice-President of the Washington REALTORS, the statewide trade association of professional members of the National Association of REALTORS (NAR). He also serves the University Place – Fircrest Division of the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce on it’s Board of Directors and he serves the City of University Place on the Economic Development Commission.   Pat is also a 20-year Air Force veteran. But most importantly, he’s been a     University Place native since 1953.