Weimer praised for leadership, gets another year as Whatcom County Council chair

Carl Weimer

Carl Weimer was unanimously selected by his colleagues on Tuesday, Jan. 13, to serve another year as chairman of the Whatcom County Council.

Fellow councilor Ken Mann was especially vocal in his endorsement of Weimer. Mann took to Facebook on Monday, Jan. 12, to ask Weimer to consider the chair for a second consecutive year.

“His work ethic and leadership and intelligence are a tremendous benefit to Whatcom County,” Mann wrote on his public Facebook page, “ Ken Mann Whatcom.”

Last year Weimer, to begin his third term as council member, authored the water action plan that reasserted water quality as a top priority of the council.

The plan led to $4 million in spending in 2015-16 and nearly 10 new full-time-equivalent positions in the county, mostly for stormwater control and keeping fecal coliform pollution out of shellfish beds.

In other assignments doled out Tuesday, Rud Browne took on the duties of council vice chairman and will lead council meetings in Weimer’s absence. Pete Kremen, for 16 years the county executive before being elected to the council in 2011, was selected to be executive pro tempore, to carry out some of Executive Jack Louws’ duties in his absence.

Kremen stayed on as the County Council’s representative to the Whatcom Transportation Authority board. Louws is also on the WTA board.

No one wanted to join the Bellingham International Airport Advisory Committee, which was assigned to Browne last year. The committee also was shunned when the Bellingham City Council divided up responsibilities among its members on Jan. 5. The City Council left its spot on the committee vacant.

Browne said the airport committee no longer considers the technical side of airport operations and has become “100 percent noise complaints.”

“It’s not that I don’t think the noise issue isn’t important,” Browne said. “It’s just that we have no influence” on how the airport is run. Bellingham International Airport is operated by the Port of Bellingham.

Council member Sam Crawford, who has served on the airport committee before, accepted the job because the meeting fit into his schedule.

Chairman Weimer quipped that he was pleased the council will be represented on the committee.

“Since I live under the flight path, I’ll be talking to you,” Weimer said.