November's elections are tremendously important, and may have impacts far beyond Whatcom County.
Emblematic of this significance is the issue of Washington's Growth Management Act. Drafted to protect farmland while encouraging sensible urban growth, the GMA has been the law for 23 years. All 39 counties comply with it except one -- Whatcom.
Our County Council has been resisting enforcement of the GMA while facilitating developers' steady encroachment into rural areas. The council has spent over $150,000 hiring private lawyers to fight the GMA over and over again, losing virtually every time. The uncertainty this creates in development policy makes Whatcom County much less attractive to entrepreneurs looking to invest and create new jobs.
Two council members seeking reelection have consistently voted to defy the GMA and I believe waste taxpayers' money on these fruitless lawsuits: Kathy Kershner and Bill Knutzen.
Barry Buchanan and Rud Browne are campaigning to replace Kershner and Knutzen. I have met both of them. Both have distinguished records as civic activists and small business owners. On the GMA, Lake Whatcom water quality, and other critical issues, I believe they will represent the interests of all county residents, not just a fringe who insist on flouting the law of the land. Please vote for Buchanan and Browne, and for a sound, sustainable future for all of Whatcom County.