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Whatcom County could ask Trump to pay fraction of $306K Lynden rally security costs

Donald Trump rallies the crowd in Lynden

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks to an overflow crowd at the Northwest Washington Fairgrounds in Lynden, Wash., on Saturday, May 7, 2016.
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Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks to an overflow crowd at the Northwest Washington Fairgrounds in Lynden, Wash., on Saturday, May 7, 2016.

Whatcom County could ask Donald Trump’s campaign to reimburse the costs of providing security for his May 7 rally in Lynden.

Whatcom County Council members Barbara Brenner and Todd Donovan plan to bring a resolution to the council on Tuesday, Sept. 27, that if approved would have the county send letters to the Republican presidential candidate’s campaign, the Republican National Committee, Trump’s Washington state team, and state Sens. Doug Ericksen and Don Benton, who are deputy director and director of the state Trump campaign.

The resolution states that Whatcom County alone spent no less than $53,000 to respond to the rally, which was held at the Northwest Washington Fair grandstand with only a few days’ notice after plans to hold it at hangar space at Boeing Field near Seattle didn’t pan out.

The resolution recognizes that major presidential candidates rarely visit Whatcom County, and states that “Whatcom County encourages and embraces visits from presidential candidates, regardless of party affiliation,” and also states that the council expects county “taxpayers should not bear the full costs of public safety demands that result directly from events organized by presidential campaigns.”

The rally attracted thousands of supporters, and hundreds of protesters, and many police agencies offered staff to provide security in and around the event.

In the end, the cost for the response by various western Washington agencies totaled more than $306,000, with $129,000 of that paid by agencies in Whatcom County.

Below is a breakdown of costs by agency. Whatcom County compiled the in-county agency costs, while costs to other agencies were compiled by The Bellingham Herald.

Whatcom County agencies

Bellingham Fire Department: $3,662.80

Bellingham Police Department: $38,553.87

Ferndale Police Department: $3,712.17

Lynden Fire Department: $5,130.14

Lynden Police Department: $4,345.81

North Whatcom Fire and Rescue: $11,322.72

Port of Bellingham/Bellingham International Airport: $4,387

Sumas Police Department: $450

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife: $862

Whatcom County Fire District 14: $413.64

Whatcom County Fire District 7: $1,385.10

Whatcom County Fire District 1: $428.58

Whatcom County Public Works: $396.60

Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office: $52,066.67

Whatcom Transportation Authority: $640

What-Comm 911 Communication Center: $1,635

Outside Whatcom

Seattle Police Department: $28,190

Washington State Patrol: $99,692

Bellevue Police Department: $23,346

Skagit County Sheriff’s Office: $5,000.90

Bothell Police Department: $2,934.72

Lynnwood Police Department: $5,455.34

Everett Police Department: $5,974.37

Mukilteo Police Department: $1,612

Edmonds Police Department: $5,038

Total: $306,635.43

Samantha Wohlfeil: 360-715-2274, @SAWohlfeil

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