Eleven years ago I stood next to the then-county executive, Pete Kremen, when he told the citizens of Whatcom County that if they voted for the one-tenth of one percent increase in the sales tax that he would build a new safe jail. He did not do it.
He kicked the can down the road for 11 long years. Now, I believe Ken Mann has picked up the can and is preparing to kick it down the road for another 10 years.
Meanwhile, the county employees, correction deputies and staff are laboring in an unsafe workplace trying to manage an over-capacity inmate population with failed control systems and inmates forcibly housed in inhumane conditions.
The current county executive has had the courage and will to correct the existing problems. His actions will lead to the prevention of exposure of horrendous liability for the citizens of Whatcom County should an event occur in the jail.
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I do not know why Mr. Kremen and Mr. Mann have continuously tried to obstruct the process leading to the construction of a new, safe jail. They need to put their self-interests aside and start working for the safety of the corrections staff and the inmates and on behalf of the citizens of Whatcom County.
Marvin M. Wolff