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Comment Archives: stories: Culture & Food: Arts & Culture

Re: “Snow Removal Blues

Hi Kelly Rae, i think i might have a few answers for you as i used to work for the city of Spokane street dept for several years and have an inside scoop on many of it's workings. First off the deicer we use is a magnesium cloride which is designed to be applied to the road to prevent the snow from sticking so that we can plow the streets cleaner. It also can deice a thin layer of packed snow and ice usually no more than 1 inch thick. Now that is only if it is applied at a heavy rate of 40-80 gal per lane mile or more. Now our head management has told us time and time again only to apply it at 20-30 (gplm) and also only on hills, curves and lit intersections. Which means that all of the spaces in between will remain super icy and at such a low rate even the hills will only see safe ice melting after multiple applications from several shifts of workers. The only reason the deicer is not applied to the entire route and at an effective rate in the first place is, you guessed it money. Our head engineer Andy Schenk only cares about staying on budget. He will sacrifice pubic safety time and time again just so he doesn't look incompetent and have to ask the city council for more funding. He also gets a bonus if we keep our deicer budget under what city hall has allocated. So that is the main reason why the arterials in town remain super icy for most of the winter. He also buys the cheapest plow trucks money can buy. The paticular brand of Freightliner trucks we buy are terrible for plowing snow and do not even have a locking differential. They are constantly breaking down. Which means of the 60 or so peices of snow removal equipment we have at least 20 percent are usually broken down and waiting for repairs. Again it's a money thing as a nice Mac or Kenworth can cost 200k plus but a Freightliner costs only 120k. We also have lost many positions in the last 30 years. I think we had somwhere around 100 employees 30 or 40 years ago. Now we only have 60 do to yearly budget cuts. We also spread those 60 people out very thin to cover day and night shifts 7 days a week during the winter months. Our management also doesnot like to pay overtime wages and time and time again refuses to call in the entire work force for an active storm. Leaving on an average day or night maybe 12 people to make sure that every arterial street in town is safe. That is the best case, not including those on vacations or out sick. As far as the trucks running with their plows up. Most likely the truck has either a mechanical issue and is heading in for repairs or the driver is heading in for a lunch break. You can only plow at 10-15 miles an hour and that takes a long time to drive back to the shop for break. So to sum up bad management decisions have basically tied the hands of the employees who are trying to be as efficient as possible. That and a lack of good equipment and proper staffing equals poor response times during and after snow events.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by mike t on 01/14/2017 at 4:30 AM

Re: “Snow Removal Blues

Interesting when the Inlander, the liberal publication, writes a sympathetic article, to the "plan" and the Spokesman-Review, the conservative paper writes an article comparing other cities management to Spokane's versus the statements of those in charge of the budget for our streets. When the SR makes a criticism it's probably well beyond the time for something to be done. I'm surprised, Inlander. I think we'd all like to know how, in a multi-million dollar streets budget, the city only allotted $750,000 to snow-plowing, knowing this was going to be terrible winter? If Madison, WI and other cities about our size are doing a better job, it's time to ask some different questions. The revenue being lost from lack of plowing may be greater than that spent on not plowing, not to mention accidents this year. I think it's time for a lot of us to speak up at City Hall next public opportunity. People getting stuck on Main Street Downtown, a major thoroughfare. Plows going around with their blades up. People want answers.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Kelly Rae Mathews on 01/10/2017 at 2:46 PM

Re: “Snow Removal Blues

I believe it's 'corrosion' not 'erosion' caused by the road salt.
And La Nina is actually Colder and Wetter ( more snow than rain) than normal - Great for us SKIERS! :-)

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by ssxt on 01/06/2017 at 3:17 PM

Re: “To Be a Tree

I'm not sure who I should be directing this question to but, why is the willow inside Manito park not on this list?! I went to the registry list and look. No trees in Manito are on the list. That tree is absolutely beautiful and, in my opinion, totally deserves a place among the great trees of Spokane!

Posted by Cindy Anderson on 12/30/2016 at 5:50 PM


Oops. Only 12 hours later and I already owe an apology and a correction. Tonight at our (sold out!) play, I learned that the Inlander reviewer came on OPENING night, not Family and Friends night, as I previously wrote. In fact, we should have been spot on but perhaps some of us, myself included, needed a few more performances. It should be remembered that this is live theatre and that anything (including cell phones, flash photography, tripping, tripping over your tongue) can happen. We actors are bidding the audience "good night" at the doors as they exit and most were smiling. Mission accomplished.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by RWeaks on 12/17/2016 at 10:44 PM


I appreciate The "Inlander" staff's attempt at an honest review, and part of it is correct. By the way, I am writing only on behalf of myself, not on behalf of the Civic, the staff, the Director, nor the dedicated volunteers who freely give of their time and energies to provide the best possible entertainment and measure of respite to our community. The actors work for no pay, only for honestly felt recognition and gratitude, whatever the level and source.

As I critique the critique, my first observation is that it could have used a bit of editorial tweaking. Although sounding the same, my name was spelled incorrectly in the review (photo caption and article spellings were different -- the article spelling is correct). That is probably of little difference for amateur actors such as I but it can make a difference for those moving onward, and to the credibility of the reporter. Also, the year was 1844, not 1884.

As to the review itself, the Dickensian authors of this review were 100% correct regarding two comments: Geddes and Durbin are the most polished, which comes in great part with experience, and my not being "settled into his Scrooge," yet. I am not British and my accent was bad, mingled with others from my real-world travels. This was also only my 3rd play and my largest role to-date at Civic. The reviewers came gratis on an evening that was essentially our final dress rehearsal for family and friends before opening to the public at large. We have evolved, for the better -- entire cast and individually. Skills are being honed.

It was an honor for me to work with such a talented and patient Director as Chris Taylor and such dedicated crew and cast. The Civic is a great treasure for all of Spokane. My only regret is that this play has had such a short (but sold out!) run.

Thank you for your time, and have "Happy Holidays."

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by RWeaks on 12/17/2016 at 11:07 AM

Re: “The Art of Impermanence

It is to the behest of sophists that such things are referred to in terms of "art" rather than a spectacle.

Jackson Pollock is a hack. So is Thomas Kinkaide. These are not artists and sometimes I think it confuses sophists like the subject of this article to act in their opposition. The reasoning behind their use of skulls seemed so fickle and groundless. One could paint a painting in opposition to the themes of Kinkaide and all they will have done is shown what the reflection of nothing looks like in a mirror. Art galleries are nothing more than sepulchers to the human spirit that creates their totems. ;P

0 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by Lysander_Spooner on 12/12/2016 at 1:37 PM

Re: “Forever Young

A very interesting article. Many women, especially models are getting conscious about their looks and trying many products to stay younger and beautiful. After puberty, skin conditions like acne, cellulite and stretch marks affects women because of which they lack confidence. Many treatments like proper diet, body challenge program and meilleur anti cellulite ( massage helps to get rid of these skin conditions and makes skin look smooth and younger.

Posted by AdriaHarrison on 11/23/2016 at 1:39 AM


"During a May episode of "Live with Kelly and Michael," comedian Chelsea Handler reportedly said, "I did buy a house in another country just in case, so all of these people that threaten to leave the country and then don't, I will leave the country," according to"

Don't let the door hit ya, where the good Lord split ya, Chelsea.....

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Why Delete the Truth Inlander? on 11/22/2016 at 2:18 AM

Re: “The Bart of Storytelling

This play is fantastic! And I am not normally someone who enjoys plays. Go see it!

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by nahimgood on 11/17/2016 at 2:55 PM

Re: “Hikes Every Local Should Do

Tramail fertuberse

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Figly von Pepper Spray on 11/15/2016 at 10:01 PM

Re: “Sights Unseen

I want the shirt he has on.

Posted by Laurie Joplin- McCullough on 11/12/2016 at 1:29 PM

Re: “Still Here

Great article Will. Go Zags!

Posted by Bred Toast on 11/10/2016 at 11:19 AM

Re: “Native Passion

What? This guy parties like a rock star. A bit hypocritical, this article.

Posted by inland3r on 11/04/2016 at 3:48 PM

Re: “Native Passion

Way to go Jacob!

Posted by Teresa Young Nevins on 11/03/2016 at 10:37 PM

Re: “Curtain Call

This was coming for a long time. Poor service (one employee that acts indifferent all the time), poor management (playing to an elder crowd and not the youth, choosing films based on monetary value that have already played in bigger theatres, almost no special events whatsoever - just play some awesome public domain movies, and following this no community promotion whatsoever), and an overall pessimistic outlook on its own business.
I sat down with the owner a few years ago for a documentary short and he declined to be interviewed because of poor business. This was right before they removed the last film projector being used in Spokane. I knew during this time that if the owner doesn't care about his independent theatre than nobody is. Very unfortunate to think the remaining independent theatre in town is the Garland (which is a solid venue no doubt), but hopefully someone will be able to revitalize the Magic Lantern. Whoever you may be though, please give it the TLC a local independent theatre needs. For more information, take a trip to LA and visit the New Beverly Cinema, Cinefamily at the Silent Movie Theatre, the Aero and the Egyptian. These are shining examples of why movie theatres still matter in this age of streaming. Spokane needs to keep fighting for art. And film is art, too.

2 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Garrett Elmer on 10/23/2016 at 1:42 PM

Re: “A Happy Place

Why is your "main film critic" from Salt Lake?

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Garrett on 10/23/2016 at 1:18 PM

Re: “Sights Unseen

Made some sick skateboard vids back in the day. Didn't know about the accident, heal up and get better soon!

Posted by ATate on 10/19/2016 at 4:36 PM

Re: “For Your Consideration

DBT are a great band, but were better when Jason Isbell was with them.

Posted by muddydog on 10/19/2016 at 4:19 PM

Re: “Here for the Hustle

Thank you, got that fixed! -- Dan

Posted by Dan.Nailen on 10/18/2016 at 9:18 AM

Recent Comments

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    • I Jeers to the person who wrote "Cheer Up America". First, I'd like to say…

    • on January 15, 2017
  • Re: Snow Removal Blues

    • Hi Kelly Rae, i think i might have a few answers for you as i…

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  • Re: Snow Removal Blues

    • Interesting when the Inlander, the liberal publication, writes a sympathetic article, to the "plan" and…

    • on January 10, 2017
  • Re: Snow Removal Blues

    • Hi, I believe it's 'corrosion' not 'erosion' caused by the road salt. And La Nina…

    • on January 6, 2017
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