AMAZON1

An employee at an Amazon fulfillment center in Kent in May.

To the editor -- Congrats to Tri-Cities for attracting 1,500 new jobs to be created by Amazon's construction of two new warehouses. This while the city of Yakima continues to languish under no new business development and seemingly either discouraging same or near inoperative in the effort for decades.

Yakima is paying for it in spades -- steadily increasing residential taxes, the loss of a major hospital, the current serious health care crisis while the one hospital we have (Memorial) is overburdened, understaffed and income restricted, our downtown a picture of economic poverty and city environs a petri-dish for the escalating violence.

Pasco City Manger Dave Zabell, told the Yakima Herald-Republic (Sept. 17): "Amazon brings great jobs with attractive pay (well over state minimum) and benefit packages as well as pathways to longer-term careers. These facilities will provide opportunity and help working families across our region," he noted. Something the Yakima city and county councils and management seem totally inept at being able to accomplish with effective vision or the slimmest motivation to change the city's course.

The big question for Yakima residents is: What is holding Yakima's development hostage? The contrast in the tale of these two cities begs an urgent shift from Yakima's present business-as-usual governing model to a constructive, achievable vision of commerce development ... ASAP.

ROBERT CUMMINGS

Yakima