Meeting to generate list of task force applicants

Sorry I was slow, Stuart on reporting this. I’ll post my comments as a reply. Wynne

—————–

—–Forwarded Message—–
From: STUART RICH
Sent: Dec 6, 2010 6:40 PM
To: becca@liht.org, Jackie Granger , Chirs Immer , Joan Keiper , Joan Keiper , Dave and Janice Thorn , Bill Bolete , Buffy fOX , Leslie Dempsey , Towner Mclane , Paul Davis , Wynne Lee , robert auld , Jerry Andersen
Cc: Fred Kinney , Mark Sexton , Rhyma Blake , Mike McKenzie , Chirs Morton , Dale Kinsely , lisaw3@atg.wa.gov, STUART RICH
Subject: Ferry Task Force Search Group

Dear Friends:

The next meeting of the Lummi Island Ferry Task Force search group is 12/7/ 10 , Tuesday, at 6:30 p.m. at the UCC Church.
If your organization was not able to send a representative to last week’s meeting on short notice, please consider sending a person to Tuesday’s meeting.  In the County Council’s resolution that created the task force it encourages island organizations to work together to find applicants for the task force.

At the first meeting attending by  Paul Davis- LICA, Wynee Lee-FOIL (fill in), Dan Johnson (business), Dave Thorn (independent), and Stuart Rich-PLIC , we recognized that more organizations needed to be present if the search group is to be representative of the island so the meeting was put over until 12/7/10.

At the first meeting there was general agreement on the following points: 1.   The Ferry Task Force will need to delegate tasks as their specific responsibilities are  substantial and Islanders need to support the task group’s mission , 2. We recognized the importance of  good communication between the Task Force and the community in order to insure both support, community input, and transparency, 3. The search group will develop a list of qualified applicants, encourage those people to apply but will not make specific recommendations to the County Council ( individuals and organizations are free to support individual applicants), 4. Concern was expressed about the lack of County  funding for the Task Force’s administrative  expenses.    Jerry  Anderson- LICA and Stuart Rich PLIC will request a grant for the Task Force from their respective organizations. There was discussion about asking other island orgnaizations to make a contribution to the Task Force to cover their expenses.

Wynee Lee and Paul Davis will publish announcements for the Task Force applications process on the Ferry Forum and Brown Betty.

The deadline of submitting an application for the County Council packet is 12/30, otherwise, applicants can apply until 4:00 pm  January 11th, Tuesday when the decision will be made at the County Council meeting.

The Task Force is our best opportunity to fix the broken ferry system.  Sam Crawford has made made it very clear that the next step will be a major reduction in ferry services if the ferry continues to operate at a deficit.

If you know of a person who would be a good Task Force member, please encourage them to apply.  Thank you for your cooperation in helping our community.

Stuart Rich

5 thoughts on “Meeting to generate list of task force applicants

  1. I attended this meeting. Am not sure who gave it the name “Lummi Island Ferry Task Force search group” or that (all 5!) of us agreed that it was our (or ‘this group’) responsibility to send a list of applicants to the county. Fine if that happens, I suppose, but I definitely remember the main job being to simply encourage all island organizations to encourage good applicants to apply.

    One other critical ‘agreement’ among we 5 who attended last Friday (at least I think we agreed; it was all very informal, nothing like voting occurred) was that the temporary task force shouldn’t be thought of as ‘representing’ this or that or all islander politics, postures or ‘wants’.

    As applications for all County task forces are public record, and because islanders are already wondering who has applied, I volunteered to set up a place on the Ferry Forum to link to applications once they have been received by the County Council.

  2. Wynne – I attended the meeting on the 7th and there was no misunderstanding that We were gathered to suggest possible candidates and encourage them to apply to the council for appointment to the L.I. Ferry Task Force. At no time was it suggested that we would make any recommendations to the County Council. If individual Lummi I. residents wish to do so they may.

  3. Thanks , Bud. It’s what I heard on the 4th, too, but
    ‘search group’ in my experience (corporate, education) has always implied that some list of ‘good applicants’ is generated somewhere along the line, along with the expectation of some kind of recommendation. It seemed to me that others might find it confusing that a “search group’ really would not do that, but rather only encourage applicants.

    Since you went to the meeting last night, could you please let us all know what happened, if anything?

  4. We’re not the only ones:

    From a friend’s Facebook page:

    On Thursday, Dec. 9 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Vashon High School, officials from Washington State Ferries (WSF) will visit Vashon. Among other things, they will present a potentially devastating proposal to cut our ferry service.

    As was the case two years ago, the governor has ordered a reduction of service system-wide to help balance the budget. As totally ferry dependent communities, the San Juan Islands and Vashon Island will bear the brunt of these reductions.

    We need to have as great a turnout for the meeting as we did two years ago! We need to overfill the room at Vashon High School to show our dislike of the governor’s proposal.

    Currently, the only way WSF can meet the governor’s demand is to downsize our ferry system enough to remove a Super Class ferry from service. For Vashon, this means the Evergreen State will replace the Issaquah on the north-end dock. The loss of the Issaquah will mean a 30 percent cut in service for Vashon in the morning and evening. This equates to over 700 vehicle spaces being removed daily.

    On the south end, the runs added last year will be taken away.

    At the beginning of the meeting, as Ferry Advisory Committee chair, I will take a straw vote. The question is: Does the majority support the existing schedule, with some boats off the posted times, or would you rather lose three round trips each day? This would mean an additional 500 vehicle spaces not including the 700 we lose with removing the Issaquah!

    The issue we need to bring up is that the Evergreen State cannot keep the current schedule due to its age and wear and tear. This will mandate a loss of three additional round trips each day. That, plus the need to balance capacity with Southworth, will require changing the schedule to the 16 hours of daily operation mandated by the state Legislature.

    My biggest bone of contention is that WSF has been required to make a 4 percent cut in its operating budget — or $18 million. We, the users, pay for 65 percent of the operating costs in tariffs. The current proposal does not take that into consideration.

    Cuts should be made only from the 35 percent the ferry riders don’t pay for. Based on that premise, only $3 million would be cut, not $18 million. Additionally, the ferry system has cut more than $50 million over the past two years and is not getting any credit for all that effort.

    I want to remind everyone that this proposal was directed by the governor and is not what the ferry system wants to do. It will be important to make the governor know how we feel again. Please remember that shooting the messenger does not help in this case. There will be time for questions and comments during the meeting.

    If you cannot get into the room, as was the situation for some Islanders two years ago, please sign in and make comments so we can convey the message that we do not support the service cuts.

  5. And his report from the meeting:

    “just back from the big wa state ferry meeting/presentation/pow wow/woe and mutual misery-fest — a tape loop might has well been playing to the audience, as a stand in for the representative present: ‘the system is broken. the state is broke. the system is broken. the state is broke. the system is…”

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