I just sent an email to the Council asking for clarification about the delay in appointing a new ferry advisory committee (my email is at end of this post). UPDATES: Councilor responses (after my email) from Barbara Brenner (4/11), Kathy Kershner (4/12)
I had discovered that the link to the County’s previous link to applications for the Ferry Advisory Committee was broken, so I’d emailed Jill Nixon (Council clerk) asking for clarification and when it would be reposted. She replied saying that appointment of the committee was ‘now in the hands of the Council.’ That confused me because making appointments to all Council advisory committees is always completely in the Council’s hands.
Over 2 weeks have gone by with no word to citizens about the delay. I decided it was time to ask our elected representatives directly. I will post responses as they come in. If anyone else has information to share — preferably written comments from council members, which are in the public domain — please share them in the Comments.
Here’s my email:
From: Wynne Lee
Sent: Apr 11, 2012 2:48 PM
To: county council
Cc: “email@example.com” , LICA board
Subject: seeking info on delay on ferry advisory committee appointments
Dear Council Representatives
I respectfully request responses to the questions below about the delay in your appointing the new ferry advisory committee. (As usual, I will post my email query on the Lummi Island Ferry Forum immediately after hitting ‘send’, and then post all responses I receive, plus convey them to other community information outlets.)
At present, rumors and hearsay abound about the delay in appointing the ferry advisory committee, based on speculations and private conversations that some islanders have had with some council members.
As a citizen of Whatcom County and as Editor of the Lummi Island Ferry Forum, I am asking you to please ‘fill in the blanks’ about this unexpected delay with solid information. I understand that the Council is the sole “decider” on appointing this committee, as it is for all County Council committees.
- What are the reasons why appointments were not made on March 27, 2012?
- Who are the (remaining applicants) to be appointed to he committee?
- Why has the link to the PDF of all current applications been removed from the County Boards and Commissions, and when will it be re-posted (revised if necessary)?
- What is the plan for moving ahead with making appointments?
Getting timely answers is especially important because there was, at the time of the March 27 meeting, a sufficient number of applicants who met the defining criteria in the Ordinance the this Council passed that established the committee, including conditions for being appointed. That makes this delay rather confusing, given that both you, our elected Council representatives, and citizens (including the 2011 Ferry Task Force) have strongly supported establishing this new committee and getting it up and running in a timely manner.
I look forward to hearing from you about this soon.
Editor, Lummi Island Ferry Forum
Council responses ( by email, unless otherwise noted)
Barbara Brenner (4/11/2012)
I was ready to vote last time but a council member, I think it was Council Member Kershner but don’t remember for sure, wanted it postponed so I said okay. bb
From: Kathy Kershner <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>Sent: Apr 12, 2012 3:05 PM
>Subject: Re: seeking info on delay on ferry advisory committee appointments
>The council postponed making appointments to the ferry advisory committee because we were hoping to get more applications from residents that did not live on Lummi Island and who do not own property on Lummi Island. There is no conspiracy and I appreciate you asking.
>Councilmember, District 1