I heard County Council At-Large candidate Rud Browne at the Oct. 4 League of Women Voters/Bellingham Herald debate, and was impressed with his thoughtful, balanced, well-informed responses. For example, on land use decisions he stressed the importance of considering both short- and long-term community impacts, and said that decisions should neither benefit the individual at the expense of the community, nor the community at the expense of the individual. On the GPT expansion, he said that council members must consider seven factual questions; but that he would also work for a process that avoids a subsequent court challenge, ensuring that the final permit decision is a local one.
On job creation, he stressed the need for job training to build technical skills. He showed how he walked the talk on training, when his company, Ryzek, helped Bellingham Technical College design classes that teach students the specific skills they would need to work in his or other companies.
I like that Rud and his wife chose live in Bellingham not because they were born here, but because they love it. I'm impressed that he started and ran a successful international business employing 100 people in Bellingham, was a great boss and strong community volunteer. I'm convinced that he'll be a thoughtful, informed council member who listens to others.