Posted by: sweeneyblog | April 1, 2015

Sheriff Elfo pleads for Jail Funding, would consider it both “Christmas and a Birthday Gift”

Note: This was a satirical post for April Fool’s Day. 

Sheriff Bill Elfo told the County Council that if they just greenlit the funding for the new jail, he would consider it “really awesome” and it would “totally count as my Christmas AND birthday gift.”

Bill Elfo

Elfo, a well-known Christmas enthusiast, was proposing a sales tax which would shift the burden of paying for the jail to the poor of Whatcom County, since sales taxes unfairly burdens the less fortunate and the poor are the most likely to go to jail. However, he faces resistance from the County Council who have serious concerns about the implementation of those funds.

Barry Buchanan responded to Elfo’s proposal, “You can’t just say it’s your birthday present. That’s not how it works.” Buchanan continued, “Besides, Carl already made a card and we all signed it. Well, Barbara Brenner signed it really big so I had to kindof squeeze my signature into the bottom corner, but that’s not the point. You can’t have it as your birthday present.”

County Prosecutor Dave McEachran was less certain. “He did claim that it was both Christmas AND Birthday present, so that’s got to count for something. Also, no one told me it was his birthday so now I look like a jerk. Thanks guys.”

County Executive Jack Louws was unfazed. “Look, Bill’s birthday isn’t until April 23rd, so we’ve got a few weeks. I don’t necessarily have a problem with giving him the funding as a birthday present but it can’t count as a Christmas present too, that’s too far away. I might find a really good model train or something for him before Christmas. What will I do then?”

Noted municipal rabble rouser Wendy Harris took to facebook to tweet her displeasure about the whole process. “Are you kidding me? What about the cost overruns and the environmental damage this new construction could cause! Someone needs to stop this gift-giving madness!” The status received one comment from Michael Lilliquist saying, “Good point.”



  1. Well I sympathize with Sheriff Elfo – he is the boss, he has a tough job that includes pleasing people he doesn’t really like much and keeping order among the disorderly dregs – and his office is a windowless 10×10 room in the jail basement.

    Here’s my idea – why not build a six-story parking structure on the parking lot across from the jail, and put a new Sheriff’s office on the top floor? The newly vacated space in the basement could be used for jail services and perhaps overflow jail capacity.

    The County building needs a major retrofit – due to past incompetence, the jail and the new courthouse need extensive repair. I’ll bet this repair, AND a new parking structure/Sheriff’s office could be done much more cheaply than the proposed white elephant.

    Sheriff Elfo could have a corner office with a view, the City would solve much of its current parking problems, the costs to us poor taxpayers would be much less, and the land purchased for the jail should be worth more than paid for. And jail is not supposed to be a nice place to visit – IMHO the shittier the better!

  2. Or, by using prison labor (those who get bored waiting for a quick and speedy trial should be doing something productive) maybe the county/city could turn the old Grainery into a jail annex! Prisoners would be occupied, would work for their keep, and we’d have a stop-gap. The cost wouldn’t be as great.

  3. Excellent article on the use and abuse of jails here:

  4. Riley,

    I have to say that I like the Blog Site re-do. Your picture makes you look so diabolical.

    • And so grown-up!

      • Yes, great point. My how time flies, they grow up before you know it and then they go on Social Security and Medicare.

  5. I am flattered to be satirized in the Junkie, and Michael Lilliquist is too.

    • It is with love Wendy.

    • Bellingham is becoming a little Peyton Place, eh?

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