Bellingham Updating Accessory Dwelling Laws
Sat, Nov 14, 2015, 5:33 pm // Guest writerGuest writer, Shannon Maris, says this about herself. I am a residential building designer in Bellingham. I am on the front lines of people wanting to build…
Mon, Nov 23, 2015, 7:28 pm
Today marked a milestone in the site preparation for the Bellingham waterfront redevelopment. The gigantic hoppers that fed chips to the pulp digesters were toppled to clear the way for demolishing the rest of the digester building. Demolition should proceed quickly from here. A reasonable crowd of a hundred or so braved the cold to watch for the eventful moment.
The public should be wary of fugitive dust emissions from the site, as mercury has been seen to saturate building materials in the vicinity of mercury vapor emissions such as occurred from the chlor-alkali production cells. Similarly, the demolition debris should be tested, since methylation of mercury is known to occur even in environments with high sulfide concentrations. The sulfide based operation of Georgia-Pacific has often been used to suggest that methylation of mercury should be minimal, but studies elsewhere have shown otherwise.
CATEGORIES - Click for up to 50 most recent articlesArts & Recreation Bellingham Business Chuckanut Ridge Coal Port and Trains Elections Environment Health & Home Jail Planning Lake Whatcom Law & Justice Libraries Lummi Nation News Media Open Government People Planning Port of Bellingham Science & Weather USA & Beyond War & Peace Washington State Waterfront Whatcom County WWU
Wed, Nov 18, 2015, 3:45 pm
Elisabeth Britt over on her Latte Republic website has a new article that raises good questions about our county planning department. The proposed 'Lincoln Park Retirement Center' for Lincolm Road between Blaine and Birch Bay is being denied by the county. Why? Elisabeth explores the issue in her article. This senior living home would provide senior living residences plus suites for dementia patients. There is a need for both these types of homes in Whatcom County.
On my read, it seems the county planning staff just plain do not think this the right place for a senior living facility, even though the planning codes very specifically allow for it. Maybe not the rule of law. The article includes an action agenda with contacts to encourage the county to follow its own codes.
- John Servais
Tue, Nov 17, 2015, 5:13 pm
In 1984, I started Fairhaven Boatworks at Boulevard Park with four dories and a couple sections of wooden floats. In 1985, I moved to the Port of Bellingham's Fairhaven Terminal. For all the years I ran the Boatworks, the Port of Bellingham steadfastly refused to post signage for the business or list it in their property catalogue.
Well the times are changing!
Today an observant citizen notified me that a new sign had appeared near the boat launch bathrooms near the Amtrak Station. It was hard to believe, especially since Fairhaven Boatworks transitioned into the Community Boating Center in 2007. But a picture is worth a thousand words.
As the saying goes, you shouldn't care what they say as long as they spell the name correctly.
- Tip Johnson
Sat, Nov 14, 2015, 8:32 pm
We support the people of Paris. And hope that Hollande will not be "merciless" in his retaliation, as he said he would. It does become a spiral. Here is an article on why France and Paris over other countries and cities. This symbol resonates.
- John Servais
Mon, Nov 02, 2015, 2:01 pm
According to a report from County Executive candidate Joy Gilfilen, the County has - in a classic stonewall - summarily rejected the Restorative Community Coalition’s Request for an Investigation and Notice of Improper Conduct. This was learned verbally today at the meeting of the Whatcom County Incarceration Prevention and ReductionTask Force, but the response is being processed by mail so details will not be available until after the election. It is not known if the Task Force or the Ethics Commission actually considered the complaint, or if the County administration rejected it for them.
It appears a similar and expanded complaint filed by the Whatcom Civil Rights Project and sent to the County Prosecutor, State Attorney General and Public Disclosure Commission will also remain without response until after the election - when we can reasonably expect it to be similarly rejected.
The drive to build a regional FEMA-style detention center will resume after the election with or without the passage of the jail tax. Citizens concerned with over-incarceration in Whatcom County will have to redouble their efforts even after the votes are counted. Citizen outreach to the officials and agencies above will need to be resounding and substantial funds will likely need to be raised for the matter to be prosecuted in court after it is ignored by the responsible parties.
And who said your vote doesn't count? Unfortunately it often counts too little and too late. This is why political philosophers say the first rule is to vote the innies out. When you've finished, you can start over.
Mon, Nov 02, 2015, 1:29 pm
Just approved another 5 people for commenting on NWCitizen. Each provided their actual name - first and last - and how I could contact them for verification. We welcome local residents to comment. I have denied commenting to some from other states as this site deals with local issues. If someone lives elsewhere but has local roots or is temporarily away, we are always open to their commenting.
But with the controversial postings of late, a lot of new applications will not be enabled. The supposed real names of these are: Agorgape, Catmom, 5cher, peonietiger, rj416, Pace, engaged - and on and on like that. Tilt. Back when we first enabled coments, I would try and track down all these folks and see if they wanted to comment using their actual names. I still do that if I have time.
If you do want to comment, we need to know that you are who you say you are. Here is a brief explanation of basic info needed.
Screen Name. Your actual name. Mine is John Servais. It appears with your comments on the computer screen.
Username. The word you use to login - it can be 5char or Catmom or rj415.
Password. Up to you. We cannot see this. Total privacy for you.
Where you live. Bellingham or Whatcom County or Lummi Island or Deming. Make it real.
Phone number. So we can contact you to verify your identity if needed. We often do this.
Those are the basics. We have over 300 registered commenters. All receive our occasional emails with notice of new posts and sometimes other information.
So, Bobin44, tma1, and others, I think most of you might have not realized that your "screen name" needs to be your real normal name. If you applied and have not been approved, pleae feel free to email me with your real name and I can enable you. I'll know it is you from your email address. Your login and password can stay the same. email@example.com
- John Servais
Sat, Oct 31, 2015, 1:59 pm
The Whatcom Civil Rights Project has filed a complaint against the County. There could be quite a lot of egg on the faces of folks if their favorite candidates and public officials end up on federal racketeering charges. Just sayin'.
Tue, Oct 27, 2015, 11:42 am
We have done our best to show how the jail tax and jail proposal don't pass the smell test. We are not alone.
The Restorative Justice Folks have collaborated with other concerned citizens to outline a list of questionable points of public conduct and called for the Whatcom County Ethics Commission and the Incarceration Reduction and Prevention Task Force to investigate.
Their notice is published here.
The document can be seen here.
Mon, Oct 19, 2015, 6:44 pm
Update in late evening
Also - the Bellingham-Whatcom County Professional Fire Fighters - IAFF Local 106 - have urged voters to reject - vote no - on the jail sales tax proposition. The two organizations put out a joint statement this afternoon.
Posted 3:30 pm today
In a bombshell announcement, the Bellingham Police Guild today urged that the jail sales tax proposition be voted NO by citiizens. The announcement, on the Police Guild website, notes that they supported the 2004 jail tax and that while $31 million has been collected from that, little has been done towards a new jail.
They also noted that fuzzy language in 2004 allowed those funds to be diverted to other uses than a new jail for the past 10 years, and that the same fuzzy language is in this year's proposition.
The announcement also notes that other large local law enforcement organizations have not supported this year's proposition.
- John Servais
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Mon, Nov 23, 2015, 5:41 am // Dick ConoboyThe student housing project for 648 individuals called NXNW (North by Northwest) on Lincoln Street is moving forward briskly. This is an update.
5 comments; last on Nov 25, 2015
Mon, Nov 16, 2015, 10:41 pm // John ServaisCouncil to allow three weeks for written comments on tax exemption proposal for high density buildings in quiet Fairhaven neighborhood
9 comments; last on Nov 19, 2015
Mon, Nov 16, 2015, 4:30 am // Dick ConoboyThere is no reason to rush an updated ordinance on ADUs when we do not even know what the current number is or where existing illegal units are…
8 comments; last on Nov 25, 2015
Sat, Nov 14, 2015, 5:33 pm // Guest writerBy Shannon Maris. Detached ADUs - the 'mother in law' mini cottages - are being considered by the city of Bellingham. This impacts every home owner.
3 comments; last on Nov 19, 2015
Wed, Nov 11, 2015, 4:23 am // Dick ConoboySome personal thoughts on thanking our veterans for their service
1 comments; last on Nov 11, 2015
Sun, Nov 08, 2015, 9:25 pm // Guest writerAn overview of Whatcom County's method of processing ballots and counting votes.
2 comments; last on Nov 14, 2015
Fri, Nov 06, 2015, 4:37 pm // John ServaisSatpal Sidhu wins council seat. Virtually all the ballots are now counted. Challenges and a few special are left.
1 comments; last on Nov 06, 2015
Thu, Nov 05, 2015, 9:17 pm // John ServaisJail sales tax is being rejected - and the NO vote is increasing. Sidhu - Kerschner still undecided. Props 2, 3, 9 and 10 all should pass.
1 comments; last on Nov 06, 2015
Wed, Nov 04, 2015, 6:45 pm // John ServaisSecond tally of 10,000 more ballots is in. Jail sales tax is now being rejected. Probably 15,000 or more ballots to go.
2 comments; last on Nov 05, 2015
Wed, Nov 04, 2015, 12:05 am // John ServaisThe first returns - probably 60% of the final vote - shows contradictory propositions passing and most candidate races decided.
7 comments; last on Nov 04, 2015
Mon, Nov 02, 2015, 8:04 am // Dick ConoboyGrowing Veterans was created to empower military veterans to grow food, communities, and each other.
2 comments; last on Nov 04, 2015
Sun, Nov 01, 2015, 9:31 am // John ServaisWhere more substantial evidence is presented against proposition 9 - and why you should vote REJECTED on it.
24 comments; last on Nov 04, 2015
Sat, Oct 31, 2015, 2:02 am // John ServaisAs an independent citizen and political junkie, here is how I am voting - with brief reasons for my choices.
8 comments; last on Nov 03, 2015
Tue, Oct 27, 2015, 6:56 pm // Tip JohnsonThe latest addition and the issue in review
Mon, Oct 26, 2015, 11:39 pm // Whatcom CitizenA perspective on the our changing news system, the consequences, and the challenges for the future. With a suggestion of the solution.
5 comments; last on Oct 28, 2015
Mon, Oct 26, 2015, 3:32 pm // Tip JohnsonWhen they feel you just don't need to know
4 comments; last on Oct 28, 2015
Mon, Oct 26, 2015, 1:57 pm // Tip JohnsonWherein the operative information is $$$ECRET
3 comments; last on Oct 29, 2015
Sat, Oct 24, 2015, 1:26 pm // John ServaisWhatcom group plans meeting workshop to submit comments to Washington Dept of Ecology against Skagit/Bakken oil trains.
6 comments; last on Oct 26, 2015
Tue, Oct 20, 2015, 2:53 pm // John ServaisAfter 126 years in business, Fairhaven Pharmacy closes for the last time at 6 p.m. today. Historic Fairhaven Association to do Halloween photos.
1 comments; last on Oct 20, 2015
Tue, Oct 20, 2015, 9:25 am // John ServaisCounty Executive - and candidate for reelection -Jack Louws has written county officials with his regrets over jail mailer.
8 comments; last on Oct 24, 2015
Sun, Oct 18, 2015, 11:37 am // John ServaisThe jail sales tax proposition is a road to perdition for our county. It is a waste and has been deceptively promoted.
4 comments; last on Oct 20, 2015
Fri, Oct 16, 2015, 4:52 pm // Tip JohnsonWith a smarmy October Surprise
9 comments; last on Oct 19, 2015
Thu, Oct 08, 2015, 7:14 am // John LesowA Canadian radio station is trying to install huge radio towers in Point Roberts for a Canadian audience. Citizen movement has fought them.
Sat, Oct 03, 2015, 2:47 pm // John ServaisJames King to return to Alaska and take job with U.S. Forest Service. Mayor will appoint a new parks director.
1 comments; last on Oct 04, 2015
Fri, Oct 02, 2015, 10:48 am // David CampThe "... new jail just doesn't pencil out", writes a well qualified accountant. A look at the future costs of the proposed jail.
11 comments; last on Oct 09, 2015
Tue, Sep 22, 2015, 4:54 pm // John ServaisThere is a good alternative for a decent jail - but we first must vote down the jail sales tax proposal in November.
5 comments; last on Sep 24, 2015
Sat, Sep 19, 2015, 3:37 pm // John ServaisWendy DeFreest, of Avenue Bread, will open a new "burger joint" called The Filling Station by late October in Fairhaven. It will not be a sandwich cafe.
Tue, Sep 15, 2015, 5:26 pm // Tip JohnsonFEMA camp or new county seat?
13 comments; last on Oct 15, 2015
Sun, Sep 13, 2015, 8:42 am // John ServaisBeware walking RR tracks on the Fairhaven waterfront in the event of unexpected encounter with a high speed train
2 comments; last on Sep 18, 2015
Mon, Sep 07, 2015, 8:06 pm // Tip JohnsonMains a' bursting - Avast!
Wed, Aug 26, 2015, 9:17 am // John ServaisPadden Creek daylighting project strays far from city promises to homeowner that his property would remain intact.
4 comments; last on Sep 05, 2015
Mon, Aug 24, 2015, 4:11 am // Guest writerChristopher Brown guest writes how traditional communal warrior reintegration practices could help our returning combat veterans.
Wed, Aug 19, 2015, 6:55 pm // Whatcom CitizenA Whatcom Citizen writes of protest movements and how our proposed county mega jail is related to them.
15 comments; last on Sep 04, 2015
Wed, Aug 19, 2015, 4:00 am // Dick ConoboyMoves to set the minimum wage to $15, even if successful, are woefully insufficient. And why aren't people speaking out about abusive work scheduling?
2 comments; last on Sep 17, 2015
Mon, Aug 17, 2015, 11:17 pm // Guest writerBruce Radtke, a retired Bellingham librarian, reported to be assaulted by police for handing out leaflets
5 comments; last on Aug 27, 2015
Sun, Aug 16, 2015, 2:39 pm // Guest writerIs the tail wagging the dog? Edward Alexander guest writes on why predictive software for our police needs basic questions answered before purchase.
1 comments; last on Aug 22, 2015
Thu, Aug 13, 2015, 10:29 am // John ServaisNothing in the Herald this morning, so NWCitizen is informing citizens of shootout at Cornwall Park.
1 comments; last on Aug 13, 2015
Sun, Aug 09, 2015, 10:52 am // Guest writerBarbara Perry has been researching the secretive election processes of the Whatcom Conservation District. Really secretive. Probably fraudulent.
1 comments; last on Aug 12, 2015
Tue, Aug 04, 2015, 7:09 pm // John Servais9:52 - final post for tonight. A running blog about the election results on this August evening. Feel free to comment.
8 comments; last on Aug 06, 2015
Tue, Aug 04, 2015, 9:14 am // Dick ConoboyWhile the city deals with permitting on the Hansen rental megaplexes, the council has asked for proposals from staff on design standards for historic areas.
9 comments; last on Aug 07, 2015
Tue, Jul 21, 2015, 11:42 pm // Guest writerEric Hirst provides us all with a well researched report on Whatcom County water issues - rights, Lake Whatcom, ground water and more.
10 comments; last on Aug 12, 2015
Tue, Jul 14, 2015, 3:13 pm // John LesowThe fight to keep Point Roberts from becoming a Radio Tower Farm is not over.
3 comments; last on Jul 22, 2015
Mon, Jul 13, 2015, 4:38 am // Dick ConoboyBellingham police are obviously trained to de-escalate armed confrontations. This is the way it should be.
6 comments; last on Jul 14, 2015
Thu, Jul 09, 2015, 7:27 am // John ServaisLois Garlick has died. For many decades, she and George served as environmental stewards and leaders in preserving wildlife and nature.
2 comments; last on Jul 10, 2015
Wed, Jul 08, 2015, 8:27 am // John ServaisLast minute political maneuvering by liberal council seeks to counter conservative review commission ballot proposals.
1 comments; last on Aug 12, 2015
Tue, Jul 07, 2015, 8:13 am // John ServaisThe Charter Review Commission made Monday evening's meeting their last - and forwarded 8 charter amendments to the County Council
3 comments; last on Jul 08, 2015
Tue, Jul 07, 2015, 4:34 am // Dick ConoboyFor Rent: York neighborhood, new, 7 bedroom single-family home, near WWU. Only $44,000 a year. City planning not paying attention.
6 comments; last on Jul 09, 2015
Mon, Jul 06, 2015, 3:30 pm // John ServaisTwo dirty tricks by the uber-conservative minority on the Charter Review Commission aimed to put their agenda before the council.
3 comments; last on Jul 07, 2015
Thu, Jul 02, 2015, 1:55 pm // David CampTrees are dying for lack of water! Only citizen action can save them.
Thu, Jul 02, 2015, 6:47 am // Dick ConoboyIf your 4th of July holiday is much more quiet this year, you can thank Clay Bulter who passed away at the end of May.
Mon, Jun 29, 2015, 4:00 am // Dick ConoboyThe Samish Neighborhood Plan has been the subject of three undesired rezones in the last year. The city ignores its own guidelines to the detriment of all.
Thu, Jun 25, 2015, 5:00 pm // John ServaisUpdated at 6 pm. Our county justice system has spent 6 years trying to teach Luba Pekisheva that she should not defend herself. Justice denied and miscarried.
8 comments; last on Jul 22, 2015
Mon, Jun 22, 2015, 4:00 pm // David CampA look at the proposal in historic financial context with projections and several questions for the proponents.
8 comments; last on Jul 10, 2015
Mon, Jun 01, 2015, 2:49 am // Dick ConoboyThree extraordinarily large (7-bedroom) single family home rentals are proposed by developers Dave and Jon Hansen on Iron St. in the York Neighborhood.
7 comments; last on Jun 10, 2015
Mon, May 25, 2015, 7:17 pm // John ServaisYoung Chiara spent 3 nights hanging from the anchor chain of Shell Oil's Arctic Challenger as a protest to arctic oil drilling.
Thu, May 21, 2015, 10:50 pm // Tip JohnsonWherein we ponder the fate of humanity
Mon, May 18, 2015, 10:17 pm // John ServaisJoy Gilfilen is challenging incumbent Jack Louws for County Executive.
4 comments; last on May 20, 2015
Fri, May 15, 2015, 5:10 pm // John ServaisRunning update of who is filing for office in Whatcom County. Posts during day Friday and final update Friday evening.
4 comments; last on May 17, 2015
Wed, May 13, 2015, 4:30 pm // John ServaisUpdated | Ski to Sea race does not need to race through sensitive Chuckanut Community Forest Park for special mountain bike leg. City did not renege.
10 comments; last on May 15, 2015
Sun, Apr 26, 2015, 1:05 pm // Guest writerTani Sutley writes a second article on the increasing number of vacation rentals - and the County Council bill to let them expand dramatically.
4 comments; last on May 02, 2015
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