Letters to the Editor: October 16 – 22, 2014


The Editor:

Why not help your town while you can?

As a tourist-related business in the downtown core, I know in my heart that this will help our downtown and city overall, especially businesses like mine that need new customers.

Blaine Harbor will attract folks, as the name is more descriptive. Having a water connotation to our name is a gift and will drive more business to our downtown.

Still disagree? Think to yourselves when you’ve been on vacation and made a decision to go somewhere because it sounded interesting. You see an interesting road sign, exit, and check it out, enhancing your trip along the way.

The same thing could happen here.

Envision this scenario in your mind: Driving west from say Montana, you’ve never been here, you see a state highway sign that reads Blaine Harbor 261 miles. Many will see this and adjust their trip, just to check out the harbor.

Now multiply this by all the folks that are on the road out there. It’s really a win-win, all the way around.

Help your city and our downtown be a bit more successful. This small addition of Harbor better describes our city and leaves a legacy. Help her out while you can.

I quote from Bing Crosby in Bells of St. Mary: “I shall not pass this way but once. If there’s any good I can do for anyone, let me do it now and not put it off, for I shall not pass this way again!”

Bill Becht



The Editor:

I want to give a huge thank you to our friends and family for coming out on September 27 at the Pastime for a wonderful celebration of a dear friend of the community, Brad “Brose” Ambrose.

In total we – with your help – were able to raise just over $8,100, which all goes to the Ryder Wayne Ambrose Foundation. We are overwhelmed by the generosity of this community. Thank you. Any additional donations can be taken to WECU.

Ben Nelson and Jayme Swansen,  on behalf of the Friends of the Ryder Wayne Ambrose Foundation



The Editor:

I just wanted to say I am so glad we have an Edaleen Dairy in Blaine now. We love going to the Lynden dairy, but that was a bit of a drive. Thank you city of Blaine for making it possible.

I would love to see even more new businesses downtown. I hope this will make other great businesses come to town. Thanks again!

Ellie Button



The Editor:

Tired of city budget cuts, deteriorating infrastructure, unkempt green spaces and not being able to provide residents the amenities they desire? Even a small children’s playground is unobtainable unless supported by outside grants. These are reasons for the proposal and why it has merit.

We are in competition every day to attract visitors, new residents and employers to our town in pursuit of financial sustainability. We know from our own behavior we would rather visit a place called Birch Bay than a placed called Birch. We also know that we are blessed with an incredibly beautiful harbor, and that over two million people live within 60 minutes of our town.

Do we wish these travelers to continue to pass us by or do we want to improve our financial sustainability and put our best foot forward? Harbor is a warm and inviting term and will help our businesses with a much-needed boost. It is a small step forward – an important component of a larger marketing plan to improve our downtown. A big change? You don’t even have to change your address.

Glen Pentland



The Editor:

Please don’t change the name of the city I love. Thank you.

Colin Hawkins



The Editor:

I read Wolfgang Kommer’s letter regarding his mail service and wanted to report we have experienced the same thing.

We receive casts from doctor’s offices from all over the country. These are patients that are in pain, so any delay is a problem. We used to get our mail and packages early in the morning but about a year and a half ago, it all changed. Some days we are lucky to get our mail by late afternoon.

We went to the post office to see what the problem was but were only told there was not enough staff to process the packages. We even went as far as to offer to come every day to pick them up. We found this new postmaster to be unsympathetic and sometimes rude. We tried calling the regional office and got no response.

If anyone has any suggestions, we are all ears.

Sue Ann Croft



The Editor:

Jeff McClure should be re-elected to his seat on the Whatcom County Public Utility District Commission.

I have worked with Jeff and his architecture firm on development projects around the county on several occasions, and have seen firsthand his vision and dedication to projects he believes will improve our communities. He brings that same kind of vision and dedication to his work as a commissioner for Public Utility District (PUD) No. 1.

I urge voters to re-elect Jeff McClure to the PUD so he may continue his work to make Whatcom County a better place to live and work.

Bob Libolt



The Editor:

We are very fortunate to have the opportunity to elect Joy Monjure to represent us in the state legislature.

Joy has a long history of stepping up when she sees a need in out community. Her involvement founding the food and farm finder, and growing the farm-to-school program demonstrate her commitment to helping our farmers compete in the marketplace, and find stable markets to sell their produce.

She has served on the Everson City Council and worked as communications director for Bellingham Public Works.

Joy knows how important it is to maintain our infrastructure and brings the skills to see that the job gets done. She has been interested in water issues for a long time and is extremely informed on the issue. She believes we can find the right solutions. Joy will be a leader in helping us go forward and insure that our descendants have the quality water we all need.

Joy will work tirelessly for us, listen to us and ensure that our children and grandchildren have a great place to call home. Join me and vote for Joy Monjure to represent us in Whatcom County’s 42nd district, position 2.

Peggy Borgens



The Editor:

Let’s compare the two candidates running for the 42nd legislative district position in Whatcom County.

Luanne Van Werven’s website states she grew up in Whatcom County, is a college graduate, a youth advisory committee participant, a “voice for women, an advocate for farmers and for conservative values.” She hopes to scale back the authority state agencies have in agriculture. She was vice-chair of the state Republican Party and chair of the Whatcom County Republican Party.

Satpal Sidhu has three graduate degrees and a Fulbright scholar. As a former dean of Bellingham Technical School he created alliances with four local refineries to start a new degree program, resulting in hundreds of jobs for students. He has a unique prospective of our community having served on many local boards and committees.

Satpal has managed multi-million dollar budgets and is a small business owner along with having 40 years in international business. He states that his decisions are based on using a long-term perspective. Satpal’s focus is in education and job creation.

The comparison between the two candidates is stark. We have a unique opportunity to have a well-qualified person represent our county. We would be foolish not to allow Satpal Sidhu the chance to work in Olympia.

Naomi Murphy



The Editor:

This year, environmental special interest groups are trying to scare us into voting for their rubber-stamp candidates. We, as voters, need to stay in touch with reality. Whether you are a business or an individual, we are all likely facing our own budget shortfall.

Money is tight and government cannot remain oblivious to real life and real budgets. We as voters are tired of runaway spending and bigger government and we have had it with broken promises. Hardworking Whatcom County residents are taxed out and the bank is empty.

We need to re-elect Bill Knutzen to the Whatcom County Council. He knows that his job is not just to vote, but also to communicate in a transparent environment with us all.

Our problems cannot be swept under the rug. It is time for tough choices. Elected officials have to act, follow through and lead. Bill Knutzen is the county council candidate who will do just that.

Elinor King



The Editor:

I saw Doug Ericksen’s op-ed claiming to support small business and new energy sources. Not true!

I am the owner of one of the many small businesses in Whatcom County involved in solar, hydro, manure, bio-fuel, wood, wind and energy efficiency. I am also president of the Local Energy Alliance of Washington, an industry association.

Ericksen has done nothing in his tenure to help the local businesses working on supplying our own clean energy. This hurts the farm and forestland owners where much of that energy could be produced.

In fact there have been two important bills in front of the Senate to help us provide more of our own energy. These are not subsidies, but rather remove unnecessary regulation and open up markets, things a true conservative should support. Yet Ericksen’s presence on the energy committee is the very reason these policies have not had a fair hearing.

It seems Eriksen’s claim to being a conservative is only empty talking points. If he can’t support our local businesses, decrease regulation, open markets and increase property rights, what good is he? Let’s vote for an honest moderate instead of a fake conservative.

Seth Fleetwood has a proven record of supporting small business, being fair minded and staying loyal to his constituency.

Terrance Meyer P.E., Cascade Community Wind Company



The Editor:

Luanne Van Werven is running for 42nd district state representative. I’ve known her for many years, and I’m so impressed by her commitment to serve the people of Whatcom County.

Luanne personifies compassion, intelligence and character. She is a woman of her word. You will not find a more trustworthy and sincere person. Luanne has never hesitated to help others in need and in crisis. She does this generously but quietly. She knows the ultimate reward of seeing others get back on their feet.

Among Luanne’s many accomplishments in our community, she’s been a longtime advocate for women in particular. Luanne actively encourages women of all ages to succeed throughout Whatcom County, whether in business, in community service, or in their personal lives building strong families.

I encourage you to vote for Luanne, but even more, I invite you to get to know her. You could not ask for a more open and honest friend who really does care about your ideas and concerns.

Sam Crawford



The Editor:

I was frustrated to hear Doug Ericksen dismiss the importance of women getting equal pay for equal work. In an interview transcribed on the Bellingham Herald website he discussed the claim that he had never supported legislation supporting fair pay. His comments suggested that he had never really thought about the issue before and considered it a distraction. He quickly pivoted to another topic.

It’s disappointing to see someone who has been representing our community for 16 years express that women’s concerns aren’t serious.

The fact is that even in 2014, women in Washington make an average of $11,467 per year less than men who do the same full-time job. There may not be a silver bullet for sexual discrimination in the workplace, but an elected official who has been around since 1998 should be able to point to how they’ve addressed the problem. He won’t get my vote.

Laura Rogers



The Editor:

For the 42nd district state representative race, I have seen repeatedly that Democrat Satpal Sidhu has called his opponent Republican Luanne Van Werven a “right-wing extremist.”

Mr. Sidhu’s statement is contrary to my findings. Ms. Van Werven supports prioritizing funds for education and balancing the budget without raising taxes. She has a record of working with Democrats as a citizen legislator in Olympia, particularly on Indian tribal matters and voting rights. What is extreme about that?

I guess everything is relative. I recently listened to their debate and Mr. Sidhu stated he fully supports universal health care (which is two steps to the left of Obamacare), seems supportive of Governor Inslee’s low carbon fuel standard, which would raise gas prices over a dollar per gallon, and referred to our current bipartisan government as extremists.

These are positions espoused by uncompromising hard-left liberals. If anyone in this race is an extremist, it is Mr. Sidhu.

Joe St. Hilaire



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