I keep seeing graffiti on those billboards coming on and off the Cable and Blue Bridges. Not to pick on those specific owners but graffiti must be removed quickly to send a message to teenagers it won't be tolerated. I don't think Tri-Cities is sending that message right now.

My mom lives up in Yakima. If someone spray paints her garage, I've got someone over there to paint over it within 48 hours. It's the "Broken Windows" principle championed by former NYC mayor Rudy Giuliani. Not immediately addressing graffiti encourages other teenagers to do some tagging -- or worse. Cleaning it up ruins the satisfaction of the crime and discourages others.

So I find it a little ironic the local law enforcement leaders have been huddling in front of cameras begging for you to vote for the sales tax increase to fund their departments. Maybe the sales tax increase will help those programs that make delinquent teenagers clean graffiti, but it just seems like there's a lot of lobbying going on when I want to see police work going on.

Supposedly the graffiti is not connected to a rise in gang activity. That tells me we just need more hustle addressing graffiti.