Hello Loyal Readers,
It is time, once again, for your weekly dose of Friday local news, the Odds and Ends.
The Ski to Sea race has become a defining event for Whatcom County, yet even this buoyant outdoor celebration could not outrun (or outski or outkayak) the effects of Climate Change. With low snow levels on Mt. Baker, they have had to cancel the skiing portion of the race. Hence, I move that the race be renamed, “The Rocks to Docks.”
Snark aside, it was revealed that the final leg of the race has drawn some controversy too. Check out John Servais’ run down at Northwest Citizen here for the inside scoop on how the private company that runs the Ski to Sea has butted heads with the city parks department.
With Pete Kremen’s retirement from the County Council (viva la mustache!), three candidates have leaped into the fray. For the progressives, WWU Professor and Charter Review Commissioner Todd Donovan is running. Donovan has been deeply involved in a number of campaigns and initiatives over the years and as an ardent coal critic, may be able to tap into the same groundswell that propelled Barry Buchanan and Rud Browne into their seats.
Facing him is Theresa Sygitowicz and Bruce Ayers. Sygitowicz may be best known as the candidate that Tony Larson and Jean Melious squeezed out in their primary back in 2010, but I like to remember her for her comments that trees cause landslides so we should tear them all out to prevent erosion.
Bruce Ayers, the likely conservative nominee, has been involved with local politics for decades, most recently as Sheriff Bill Elfo’s campaign chair. It was in this role that he provided the original “citizen oversight” for the jail before the public woke up to find an 844 bed jail being proposed and shut that down.
Both Ayers and Donovan are policy-minded people, and I look forward to how the campaign will unfold.
Next week is Filing Week, where all the candidates used to have to turn in their paperwork to run for office. With the implementation of online filing, it is no longer necessary for me to hold a vigil at the County Courthouse on Friday afternoon, although it was fun (check out my liveblog here).
From council on down to sewer district, there are tons of public offices seeking candidates. If this is something that interests you, please consider running. It is a life-changing experience, no matter the outcome.
That’s all for today, I should have some big news coming early next week so stay tuned.