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Council News Release

Phyllis Shulman, 684-8805

Public Forum To Discuss Trident Submarine Presence At Seafair Festivities

Seattle, WA - Seattle City Councilman Richard Conlin announced today that he is co-sponsoring a public City Council Forum to discuss the appropriateness of having a Trident submarine at Seafair. Other Councilmembers sponsoring the forum are Nick Licata, Judy Nicastro, and Peter Steinbrueck.

When: Monday, July 31, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Where: City Council Chambers, 600 - 4th Avenue, 11th Floor

Sponsoring Councilmembers are responding to a request from the Northwest Disarmament Coalition - a group comprised of 16 local peace and justice and church groups - for a public dialogue on the Trident nuclear submarines and whether it is appropriate that they be included in a community celebration such as Seafair.

Representatives from the US Navy, Seafair, and the Northwest Disarmament Coalition have been invited to participate in a panel, which will be moderated by a neutral facilitator. There will be opportunity for public comment.

"Seattle has a long history of welcoming sailors to the city during Seafair," said Councilmember Conlin, "but there is considerable concern in our community about bringing a nuclear weapons ship into Seattle for our family-oriented Seafair celebration. I think the time has come to give citizens a chance to discuss this issue. In order for Seafair to be a truly inclusive community event, we need to hear the full range of opinions."

"We cannot and will not celebrate nuclear weapons," said Martin Fleck, Facilitator of the Northwest Disarmament Coalition. "Rather than sweep the nuclear weapons issue under the carpet, we advocate a frank and open discussion about this submarine and the significance of the weapons it carries. Hats off to Councilmembers Conlin, Licata, Nicastro and Steinbrueck for providing the citizens of Seattle with an opportunity to express our concerns about Trident."

The Bangor-based Trident submarine USS Alabama is scheduled to visit Seattle during Seafair, from August 2 to August 5. The Alabama's armament includes 192 nuclear weapons on 24 Trident C-4 fleet ballistic missiles. When another Trident submarine - the USS Ohio - visited Seattle in August, 1997 for Seafair, it was met with protests.

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