Blaine City Council candidates discuss their platforms

Published on Wed, Aug 12, 2009
Read More News

Incumbent Charlie Hawkins.

Q: In your opinion, what qualifies you for this position?

A: Already being a member of the city council gives me the advantage. Issues we are facing are not new to me. It takes time to learn the many rules the city must follow to deal with issues we are facing. As a lifelong resident, I have a different view of our town. Too many decisions are made without considering the long-term consequences. We need to try to think how our decisions will affect our grandchildren.

2. If elected, what, specifically, do you hope to accomplish?

A: We are a waterfront community. Better protecting our watershed is the main thing I would like to see done. We need to protect the thing that makes Blaine unique. That is Drayton Harbor and the surrounding waters. Who wants to brag about living on a bay in which you can’t swim in or harvest seafood? How are you going to market your business or home using Drayton Harbor as a selling point when it is closed for public use. It is our responsibility to protect our waters.

3. A planned $6 million sale of the Blaine municipal airport property recently fell through. How do you think the city can best pay the $1.4 million settlement to Blaine lease holder Don Nelson, repay $750,000 in loans paid through the city’s general fund, and nearly $400,000 in other grants that were supplied to the city for airport improvements?

A: The only way to repay the loans is to sell the property. We need to start and finish the Boblett Street connector. This will make the property more attractive to potential developers.

4. Name three specific strategies to improve the business climate in downtown Blaine.

A: Being flexible without giving developers free reign over zoning, signage and the old fashioned Blaine theme.
Continue to support festivals and events that bring tourists and residents into our downtown.
Support city projects that connects the harbor with our downtown and the mall.

5. With the Olympics less than six months away, what do you think is the best way for Blaine to capitalize on the national and global exposure generated from the event?

A: Partnering with Whatcom County in any advertising they do and keeping our web site up to date is important.
Most important is to be good hosts to travelers who stop in Blaine on their way to and from the Olympic sites.




David Gallion

Q: In your opinion, what qualifies you for this position?

A: To the citizens of Blaine and the staff of The Northern Light I thank you for this opportunity to voice my opinion and introduce myself. 

I am a quiet sort and most people of Blaine probably don’t know me, but I have been working diligently as a planning commissioner for years. 

I have run across very little opposition on hundreds of my opinions and final dissensions passed onto staff and council and all of this is public record for your viewing.  Blaine does not need compassion over failures, it needs passionate leadership and I know I can deliver just that!

Q: If elected, what, specifically, do you hope to accomplish?

A: There are three issues I wish to speak on, and let me be frank, whatever it takes. Get the city back in the black
financially. Finish unfulfilled projects and make sure there are done right. Lastly work very hard on the lawsuits and settlements.

Q: A planned $6 million sale of the Blaine municipal airport property recently fell through. How do you think the city can best pay the $1.4 million settlement to Blaine lease holder Don Nelson, repay $750,000 in loans paid through the city’s general fund, and nearly $400,000 in other grants that were supplied to the city for airport improvements?

A: Very interesting topic! I ran for a City Council seat two years ago and campaigned not to be hasty in closing the airport because I plainly could see the problems in doing so. Unfortunately, if I’m elected I will work very hard on damage control.

Q: Name three specific strategies to improve the business climate in downtown Blaine.

A: This question I like, Blaine is a unique city inasmuch its rich history, a boundary crossing to Canada and spectacular ocean views and activities, this is the thing we must exploit to the fullest, paramount  is our relationship with Canada and the Port of Bellingham a valuable consideration for this candidate.

Q: With the Olympics less than six months away, what do you think is the best way for Blaine to capitalize on the national and global exposure generated from the event?

A: Advertising, signage, word of mouth, open our homes to travelers, use the internet more aggressively, town hall meetings, think outside of the box.

This is a biggie! Can’t let it pass us by.



John George

Q: In your opinion, what qualifies you for this position?

A: Common sense changes: Reduce the overhead by nearly 60 percent is possible with three changes. Construction costs account for 52.1 percent of the city’s budget ($37,411,738.00). Business and marketing experience makes the difference. Skate park, senior programs, city marketing programs with a business friendly atmosphere are needed while reducing unnecessary expenditures.

Q: If elected, what, specifically, do you hope to accomplish?

A: Economic times requires slashing construction costs by up to $37 million. Planning department restructured subcontracting work to Bellingham’s planning department saved $420,000 a year. Realizing the City Manager is the highest paid in the county makes no sense, the $149,073 costs is obscene and would be reduced to $75,000 total cost. These three reductions overnight make our city stable and profitable.

Q: A planned $6 million sale of the Blaine municipal airport property recently fell through. How do you think the city can best pay the $1.4 million settlement to Blaine lease holder Don Nelson, repay $750,000 in loans paid through the city’s general fund, and nearly $400,000 in other grants that were supplied to the city for airport improvements?

A: The $2.5 million owed is covered by reducing the city’s expenditures by $38 million. The option to establish a restaurant row (7+ restaurants) with a full service truck stop facilities, and shopping center would also be an option. The DOT purchasing the land to develop the trucking services would also instantly offset the debt and generate a profit.

4. Name three specific strategies to improve the business climate in downtown Blaine.

A: A. Professional marketing team soliciting anchor businesses to locate here using sales tools to promote our city.

B. Reduced fees to new businesses and developers investing in our city. C. Critical freeway billboard signage both north and south of the Blaine exits.

Q: With the Olympics less than six months away, what do you think is the best way for Blaine to capitalize on the national and global exposure generated from the event?

A: $25 in city sponsored cash offers ($5 off coupons used at local businesses) could be used to promote spending cash with local businesses in our city distributed by the visitor’s center advertised by freeway billboards.