Saturday, October 12, 2013

Our Fourth Councilman?

According to State law, our elected Prosecuting Attorney serves as a legal advisor to our Council while also representing the County in all criminal and civil proceedings where the County is a party. Under our Charter, the Council must use resolutions to declare policy or exercise its executive power.

When the County's CAO was appealed to the Growth Management Hearings Board (GMHB) in June 2013, our Prosecuting Attorney's (PA's) Office defended the ordinance in front of the GMHB. I want readers to take particular note of the date. The GMHB hearings occurred during June 2013 ... after our new three-person Council took office. Our PA's defense of the CAO ostensibly took place under the direction of a different Council from the one that rammed the CAOs down our throats in its waning days last December. Our current Council has not passed any resolutions declaring its policy stance towards the new CAO nor directed the PA to defend any particular position regarding the previous Council's CAO work product.

Then, when the GMHB ruling came down in September 2013, it was the PA who issued a press release declaring the GMHB outcome to be largely a victory for the County. Again, there was no comment or resolution from the County Council.

Even though the GMHB ruling struck down parts of the County's CAO, the County did not file to defend the new CAOs in Superior Court (CSA and the Friends have filed suit with Superior Court). Again, there has been no comment or resolution from the County Council.

Last week, the PA's office opposed a Motion to Stay brought by CSA regarding enactment of the new CAO. CSA seeks to stay the implementation of the new CAO until the legal issues can be fully resolved by the courts. Along with the Friends, our PA's office, on behalf of our County, is opposing the motion. Again, there has been no comment or resolution from the County Council.

Let's review ...
  • New Council takes over in May 2013.  What do we hear from our Council about the CAO? ... crickets.
  • The GMHB hearings occur in June 2013. What do we hear from our Council in terms of coordinating with the PA on a position regarding the CAO? ... crickets.
  • The GMHB ruling is issued in September 2013. What do we hear from our Council? ... crickets.
  • CSA and the Friends file to take the GMHB ruling to Superior Court in October 2013. What do we hear from our Council? ... crickets.
  • Our PA files an opposition to CSA's Motion to Stay in October 2013 ... and so do the Friends.  What do we hear from our Council? ... crickets.
No one knows how the new CAOs will affect wildlife in the San Juans, but the crickets are flourishing at the County Council chambers.

With last week's opposition to stay, this Council cannot hide from the CAOs anymore. We already knew of Stephens' advocacy for the CAOs, since he voted for them. Now, we have to put Hughes' and Jarman's names alongside those of Pratt, Miller, Fralick, and Rosenfeld as those who are forcing a dysfunctional CAO upon us. Not even Pratt, Miller, Fralick, and Rosenfeld took court action to have the CAOs enacted, but last week, this Council allowed our PA to do just that. While our Council does nothing, Gaylord is making up County policy out of thin air ... and our Council sits on its hands doing nothing to stop it.

The CAOs have acquired several nicknames over the past few years ... Crazy Asinine Ordinance, Critical Agenda (21) Ordinance, Can't Avoid Obedience ... but under this Council, it might as well stand for "Currently Absent Officials." Despite the fact that the CAOs were a major election issue, this Council has done nothing about them, and in the resulting policy vacuum, our PA has been happy to act in their place.

Who is directing our PA regarding the CAOs?  Answer: Not our Council.


  1. Wow. Our county and the Friends on the same side. I didn't vote in the last election in order for this to happen. This is depressing.

  2. Maybe they've threatened to eliminate Hughes' and Jarman's families. They seem to get their way.

  3. Randy needs to go.

  4. Uh. Me not understand. If lawyer guy not do what I say, I get unudder one, yeah?

  5. Much like Rich Peterson, this council is "conflict adverse." No one ever seems up to getting mad or even seriously upset with ANYTHING!

    Guess the big paychecks floating in must be like a big soft mattress sucking up any demonstrative action.

    In politics, where there is a power vacuum someone will jump in and here it is our PA. Thank the good lord he is elected and we can get rid of him, but all grievances aside, Randy is totally justified in grabbing power from our asleep threesome.

    Does that make him a bad person, well sure, but please find me a politician lawyer who even maybe gives a shit about the rank and file down at "the curb."

  6. The "Council Asleep Ordinance."

  7. We need a Wimbledon Council -- New Balls Please!

  8. How much of this is a function of who controls the agenda?

    How hard or easy is to for Bob or Rick to add something to the agenda?

  9. did anyone ever question who was running this agenda?, Common if you were there, you knew. Unles you werent paying attention.
    CAO is, was, and always has been a PA agenda. God knows why, except maybe thats popular among friends, They sure move around in that office, from one side of the fence to the other and back, or should I say, Watch Yours!

  10. If anyone is under the impression that one person can "set the agenda," then they are sorely mistaken. Anyone can propose items for the agenda, which are then approved by majority vote. There is simply no way for Hughes and Jarman to avoid culpability on this or other matters.

  11. driving does occur from the back seat
    its a popularity contest nothing much atractive to be seen with but our council is easily moved by the legal ease

  12. The way to govern with transparency is this way:

    By open agenda management
    By openly debated resolutions

    It's easy to find out if this is happening. Just ask any observer of local government, a reporter, an informed citizen, anyone who cares and tries to follow what's going on.

    1) "Were you a little surprised to see Agenda Item 'X' this week?"

    2) "Do you know what the Council resolved to do about 'X' ?"

    If the response lies somewhere between a blank stare and blind rage you can be sure the rules are being broken.

  13. Perusing past trojan posts I stumbled upon this one. Really nonsensical arguments on the part of Martha Kongsgard.

    We need to get on the council people. This CAO is simply not supported by fact.

  14. Crazy Attorney Ordinance

  15. So who's the peep with the shifty eyes adjusting his cuffs there with Randy in the photograph? Does he work around here? Not a familiar face to me. Anyone know?

  16. I believe the person is Eric Stockdale DOE telling PA and Shireene what they must do to satisfy DOE.

  17. The lack of reaction from our new members of council is disturbing.

  18. @3:12 Has anyone shown up at a County Council meeting and asked our council people any specific, directed questions about this?

    Active management and all.

  19. Thanks to the TH for the State Law link on the "Duties" of the PA, and what do we find?

    "36.27.020 The prosecuting attorney shall:

    (1) Be legal adviser of the LEGISLATIVE AUTHORITY, giving it his or her written opinion WHEN REQUIRED by the LEGISLATIVE AUTHORITY or the chairperson thereof touching any subject which the LEGISLATIVE AUTHORITY may be called or required to act upon relating to the management of county affairs." (The caps are mine)

    The above is first up. Of course there are some nine pages more all of which might be important once every five years or so.

    The key words are: "WHEN REQUIRED by the LEGISLATIVE AUTHORITY..."

    So far this "Legislative Authority" ain't required nothing!

    Mr. PA is on a small skate board headed for never, never land. It appears he has NO authority for anything he has done since the new council was elected.

    It also appears to me it is his responsibility to go before the ELECTED LEGISLATIVE AUTHORITY and ask what he should do in any and ALL County business. (I do love those caps.)

    This guy is toast well done. Anyone with 10K could beat the crap out of him in his next election.

    Oh, that chairperson stuff. I'm hoping the TH will dig to see if our Jamie has been instructing the PA on the side.

  20. Well, Thank You for "putting it" so eloquently

  21. @7:17

    Can't agree more.

  22. The law makes a special provision for the relationship between the CHAIR of the 'legislative authority' and the 'prosecuting attorney.'

    Implying a special relationship. In other words the CHAIR has a higher duty of care ...

    And to @4:19 PM absolutely, and it is pretty hard to figure out the right questions to ask but thanks to learning more about the law governing the Prosecuting Attorney role, we're suddenly getting a lot closer.

    While the Prosecuting Attorney is clearly an independent elected official, the law makes really clear he performs his duties AS REQUIRED BY THE LEGISLATIVE AUTHORITY.

    And if there is nothing in writing between Randy and this Council on legal strategy, goals and scope regarding the CAO I think we have a problem Houston ...

  23. All the pending legislation stuff is done in secret though they came out of it last week and said no action had been taken so how was randy authorized to oppose the stay -- the only reasonable course for the County while there are numerous appeals pending.

    This stinks almost as bad as the Friends and Ranker cutting the guesthouse appeal off at the knees despite the will of the public. That got me to thinking. How big is the Zfriends that they control everything around here? "No dock for you. No armor inv gor you. No house for you."

  24. OK. So, one question for Council is this:

    "Why is the Prosecuting Attorney opposing the motion to stay without direct authorization from the Council as provided in law?"

    Fer cryin' out loud. All the Clowncil has to do is slap together a simple one page resolution that gives the PA his marching orders. And deliberate and pass this resolution by vote in open public session.

    You cannot manage what you cannot measure. Without resolutions passed by Council, the agenda almost my definition hidden.

    Active management of the Council agenda is a fantasy without resolutions from which to measure expectations and performance from. This is basic good government. Not rocket science.

  25. I believe any reasonable person would feel it is a waste of time and money to pursue new regulations that may soon be negated by the courts. Oh, sure FOSJ always wins so why bother. But what if they don't?

    A further stay (halt) in the action of any and all CAO rewriting or execution makes sense.

    Surely, our County Council, and I do mean all three of them can see this clearly.

    Come on you guys; tell the PA to park this thing on the back burner, AND also tell you if he even burps in the middle of the night. Put a fence on your cattle.

  26. I have to say that it really does take a year. Rick is just about there and his honeymoon got cut short by having to run twice. Bob is hitting the books hard and building a good network that will serve him well going forward.

    But this ... this public slap in the face with Randy Gaylord ... this is all on Jamie Stephens.

    Remember the "prerogative of the Chair" last summer when he tried to slip through some MRC appointees from the Twilight Zone?

    What is going on right now by opposing the stay, is exactly the same thing. Jamie is trying to pull another end run.


  27. Good gosh my mistake, how soon we forget. Both Bob and Rick were elected last November, not just Rick.

    Times up! Free year is over!

  28. It seems to me the council, did go along with the suggestions givin Sept 30,
    the PA's office repeatedly suggested we are not telling you to do this, only offering suggestions to make the problem go away. Because the council and the planning commission "in place as well" lacks the authoritative means or a ready set alternative to PA suggestions. In fact Jon Cain, was there and ready to supply good reason to drive that friends agenda right home' my god thank you Tim for jumping on that definition of Development. "Anything you DO"

  29. Thanks for the news, so in other words a suggestion was offered as if to a hypnotized subject told to bark like a dog. You are very, very sleepy ...

    Just kidding. But a suggestion is one thing, a short written resolution voted on and passed stating the reasons the Council chooses not to request a stay, and that the Council directs the PA in the same. That is how it is done.

    We need to understand the Council's rationale for allowing this decision, in their name, to move forward. The public has a right to know.

    A short resolution is the authoritative instrument the Council needs to use, otherwise they are just phoning in their performance.

  30. As said, this council has not the balls to scrutinize the efforts of the pay team, especially when they work in pairs. Nor do they understand the vast impact these ordinance have on citizens. They don't want to touch it.

  31. Seems simple enough for the Council to act. Especially if they do not want to deal with the heavy lifting of a CAO rewrite.

    Park this thing in a dust bin, where it belongs anyway, and wait for a final court decision.

    A person might wonder why the GMHB even exists. Seems like most if not all this junk planning and obtuse regulation ends up the courts one way or another.

    I mean, how many times do we want to deal with this stuff? A actual professional planner could cut this monster to twenty pages, twenty workable pages, easy to update routinely, as required, and WAY easier to administer.

    Wait for a court decision and then chuck the whole mess and start over following the direction of the court.

  32. Plus it is only a few short years before the CAO "review and if necessary update" cycle starts all over again.

    The appeal process to the State Supreme Court will likely take that long and won't even cost what the GHMB legal bills did because 1) all the paperwork is done and 2) any number of additional heavy hitters are going to join in the farther up the legal ladder this goes.

    That's because there are issues in this case of state-wide significance, probably national significance. This is also why the other side is so desperate to ram it down our throats and create precedent ... because of state wide significance. Like they just created precedent for the enforcement ordinance with the Speed issue when it was Zee who should have been hounded into court instead.

    No, Randy Gaylord is not on the side of the angels on this one, and this Council needs to REQUIRE THE PA IN WRITING TO REQUEST A STAY, NOW.

    The hell with a resolution, just make a damn MOTION to that effect! 2-1 vote.

    Time to make a stand. Rick gets to think real hard about this one ...

  33. Rick had first hand experience, as have almost all of us, with Century Link down time and inept management, now he needs to understand how similar this is to the island resident situation with the CAO nonsense.

    Surely he can easily now understand the upset in the lives of islanders this amateur piece of "work" has produced.

    I guess what pisses me off is Rick, Bob and even Jamie have NO work product. They have done NOTHING!

    Take any of the "regulations" written in the last ten or twenty years, rip them up and do a rewrite that reflects actual island living standards and expectations.

    No one can have a daughter married at their house without a permit?

    No party can last after 10pm?

    Oh the fun a working council member could have if only one shovel full was turned.

  34. The future looks like the past in Eastsound . In the past few weeks the CD&P has shut down the Drivethru coffee shop in Eastsound ,after granting a permit. Today they shut down the Brewery in Eastound after they had been up and running for a year. It looks like the Eastsound mafia is at it again. This would be a very good time for Rick to step up and help these people and prove he is not part of this group. How many peoples lives have to be hurt before we stand up and say enough. Randy , who is giving the CD&P legal advice ? How many times can the county forget the LUPA law? The meeting on Wednesday at the senior center about code changes in Eastsound should be interesting .

  35. 7:39 this is what it is. Already there is misunderstanding, much like the EAST SOUND "clean up," so let there be a little light.

    People party, people have weddings, no one can deny these things are normal, but our "CODE" is a blanket tossed across all islanders.

    In short, when someone has ten weddings a year, or when a property has a party week after week THIS rises maybe to the level of a "Public Nuisance" and then and only then do we need a regulation to deal with it.

    Instead we have the overkill that we have.

    This above is only given as an example of the huge amount of regulation (used by the friends and others) that is completely unnecessary.

  36. More information would be helpful here, planning in east sound is rather questionable.

  37. Will Council Member Hughes now finally rise in command for which he was elected?

  38. @ 7:39 PM - Brewery shut down? Not from where I'm sitting (at the Brewery). What are you talking about??

  39. @ 9:19 PM

    Whew. Great news. What a great place. I know they're dealing with a Mongolian Custer**&$! of Eastsound zoning regulations but thought they had figured out the best way to work it with the County sign-off.

    But Rick used the brewery as a poster child during the campaign as an example of bizarre zoning needed to be fixed to make the islands more business friendly.

    Since then ... crickets ...

  40. Randy Gaylord really needs to go. His greatest accomplishment in office is raising his own pay to a level he could never earn in the private sector while he works a few days a month. He wastes county dollars hiring expensive Seattle law firms to sue KVI radio, and loses spectacularly. His record is replete with this kind of failure.

    Isn't there any lawyer in the county that will run in 2014 and give us a new Prosecutor?

  41. Seems to me Randy's current record is one of spectacular wins against the CSA, CAPR, on every issue litigated thus far.

  42. What's amazing to me is that Randy was there sometimes listening to so much of what was said and still supports non science supported statements and rules. It has to be a pre-conceived agenda. There's no way they could ignore the reality otherwise.

    Is there a mental disconnect? Is there a lack of intelligence? I don't get the strange vortex they all seem to get into in that council room. Just plain weird.

  43. 2:09 has it right. The PA is working the winning side. If it starts to lose, he'll go over to another winning side.

    I'm not so sure his "wins" can be credited to him, more likely, in my view, is a structure in place that he completely understands and is hooked up with.

    I'm sure the CSA appeal of the Growth Management Board decision will will get no traction because judges get this stuff coming at them all the time and the easy way out is to support the existing power structure. Quick and easy, DONE!

    Maybe CSA Mackie can do baseball management and end up with the only judge who has an open mind, but it's not likely.

  44. @6:52
    And what are the "powers that be" locally and at the state level? Who has been in control for decades? Liberal Democrats.
    So say what you want, you continue to vote them in not understanding they are the communist party that has re-labeled itself - ridicule the TEA party all you want, but what they want is SMALL government, low taxes, and REDUCED regulation...what does Patty Miller, Cantwell, Obama, and Ranker want? MORE regulation, more control, so keep voting them and reap your just rewards.

  45. @ 4:29 AM

    You know somehow this just makes perfect sense, in the context of that little Tea Party rant.

    I'll take a libertarian liberal platform any day, that's the adjustment we need. The Tea Party is like the Monkees, created by a TV network.

    It simply does not know how to govern and if that is not obvious by now, lets just call in those nice young men in their clean white coats and take them away to the Funny Farm. LOL.

  46. @4:29
    Yes, because the democrats have shown how well they govern, I mean you can't beat $16,000,000,000,000 of debt, regulations that drive our businesses over seas, placed about 8,000,000 people on "disability" over 100,000,000 people on food stamps, and environmental regulations that are so ridiculous people are being forced off their land or unable to build a simple house in the shoreline...oh hell ye they're awesome - keep voting them in, and definitely keep coming to the TH in angered bewilderment at the ridiculous environmental laws they force onto you.


  47. Freedom of Choice!

    Tea Party ... Libtard ...

    Tea Party ... Libtard ...

    Tea Party ... Libtard ...

    Libtard ... Tea Party ...

    Libtard ... Tea Party ...

    Libtard ... Tea Party ...

  48. For the record 6:52 is not a democrat. And I hope these so called "parties"...all of em... dwindle into oblivion. (Seemingly many in the Nation's Capitol are well on the way to achieving this and nothing else.)

    A goal for all of us is to convince everyone to stop voting the "ticket." Don't vote for "machine" candidates.

    I think most would agree we got the wrong person for Governor this time and probably it was because of party line voting for a machine candidate.

  49. Remote keyless entry, remote keyless entry, remote keyless entry!

    Rubber baby buggy bumpers! Rubber baby buggy bumpers! Rubber baby buggy bumpers!

    All of life is a blur of Republicans and meat!

    All I can think of is a platter of organic prune crisps being trampled by an army of swarthy, Italian lounge singers ...

  50. 4:43. Not to be too nasty, but please go away. OR, contribute something meaningful...maybe in your case, at least, partly meaningful.

    For instance; cost of living increases are being considered for some of the highest paid personnel in County Government. When is the last time you got something as routine as this will be?

  51. I am employed by the government. I have three sibilings working in nonprofit, real estate and constrution. All of us get anual performance reviews and cost of living. I have had a dozen jobs since college all had colas. Even when my old firm downsized during the housing crash...1% cola.

  52. @ 6:15 PM

    Looks like someone's 'inner Zippie' got the best of them. Understandable, what with Erick Stockdale sitting with Randy Gaylord and Congress playing with the Zombie Apocalypse.

    Sometimes gibberish starts to make sense. Yikes.

  53. If you're unhappy with what you do, or with your something about it and stop whining.
    Then, after you've taken responsibility for your life and the choices you've made you can stop blaming others for your station in life and begin a path to recovery from your liberal state of nonsense.
    Not voting for idiot libtard democrats does not equate to voting for republicans - vote something, ANYTHING, other than the two parties.

  54. 10:50--please share your secret. Outside of government, I have never seen a COLA. Please tell us where we should be working. Because I know the regular worker in this country has seldom seen a COLA, much less one in the past five years.

  55. The people receiving increases that bother me are the ones whose salaries have increased 30-40-50% over the past years of recession, under the Rose machine. The HR woman is to be paid something like 57% more by next year. Not bad if you can swing it, and as head of HR, I guess she can.

  56. I have no secret but hard to give more detail and still be anon. That said I should clarify that my exp IN sjc has only been govt. Before that it was all pvt sector off island and I Always had cola.

  57. Yep, me too. Private sector. COLA. Health insurance. Retirement. 401k. Medical accounts.

    Jeez my nephew works for Google in the Bay Area, gets a free ride to work from SF to the campus every day, free food and really good food, massage, etc.

    If you want a productive, high performing workforce, this is how the modern private sector works.

    What planet are you from?

  58. @10:22

    Me too. I get COLAs. I work for a private company, and they also provide me with a company car and jet. Next year, I get my own man servant. It's all part of the standard compensation package along with health club memberships and paid vacations to Paris. It's wearing a bit thin. I am getting very tired of Paris. I'm likely to file a grievance about that.

    I don't know what planet you're from @10:22, but this is the standard compensation package for anyone working in the planning and environmental industries -- oh, and Google, Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, the banking sector, and the tribes.

    I don't know what your problem is @10:22. Next time choose careers better. It's not our fault you never became an SEIU member.

  59. This is a response to the last few posters:

    Wow...this is getting to be a weird conversation! And this brings up a pet peeve of mine. Some of these comments are extremely patronizing!

    Are you COLA people corporate types who have homes in the islands? It's certainly not local companies providing all this stuff! Or is it? Not based here are they? Or if they are they certainly aren't at all common.

    Any company that truly represents the island that I've always known (multi-generational islander) has nothing to do w/giant corporations and trips to Paris.

    And you are weighing in on the environmental laws here? Using a good dose of sarcasm? When you are tripping around some big US city and Paris? Or...correct me if I'm reading this wrong. It's a bit vague so...have to read between the lines.

    Do you commute by private plane and just visit the islands? During the best weather? Or maybe during certain holidays? Did I get this right? Am I understanding who you are?

    And there is a tone of superiority to your comments. Because you ... what? You're...what? Tell me what is possibly superior about you? Oh...I know....your COLA. Is that what's superior? Or your salary. Maybe it's that.

    And you're supporting wage increases for our local government workers based on...what? Is it based on any sound business strategy? You think if Shireene was having regular (free) massages and regular raises she would begin to use more scientific terms for pollutants than.."stuff" while she is pushing a CAO with regulations based on NO proof of need and no basis in practicality?

    From the sounds of it you're not even locals! Just visitors.

    You're just visitors so...maybe the true locals who work for island companies like...Jim's Heating, The Place Restaurant, Guard Electric, .... and on and on, have a better feel for the environment here. And that's with average wages, no massages, no plane tickets, just appreciation for the ability to work here and call the islands...truly...HOME. Rather than...VACATION HOME.

    I'm sorry but...the tone of those comments was just so entirely rude that I had to say something. can tell us your story if I'm off base.
    Just had to get that out.

    Will be super curious to hear if your companies are truly local. And...if so...are they hiring?

  60. @4:30
    What's ridiculous is the assumption that those who receive COLA's don't deserve them because your employer doesn't give them - typical liberal mind set - how about you start your own business? Go to school? Move where there are better opportunities?
    Stop whining?
    Enviro-whacko laws are passed by only one group of people here in this state...liberal democrats...and every one of those laws cost thousands of jobs.

  61. Sorry 4:30 this will not be as thoughtful as your post. I felt some of the comments you feel were over the top were in fact euphemism and as such at least one was very well done. Stay with the TH, because one of the things this place has is humor.

    Given our mutual situation, humor is badly needed.

    Let me be the first to admit the PA did a good job on the write up on Prop One. I'll vote for it because I'm completely stupid about voters control of every bit of power they can grab. AND, you want Lopez to be king shit for the rest of time. (It is Friday)

    Love the pic of Carrie Lacher, spouse of Howie Rosenfeld, as in let's get as many retirement checks as we can...he is running in the Hospital District, she as mayor of FH...anyway that pic has gotta be like a college grad shot.

  62. To 7:55 from 4:30

    embarrassed :)

  63. Howie will have need of the hospital district sooner or later ...

    Here's a game for the gilded set amongst us ... taking bets which businesses survive the winter ... oh look, my goodness another bakery ... bless their heart ...

    "Let me tell you about the very rich. They are different from you and me. They possess and enjoy early, and it does something to them, makes them soft where we are hard, and cynical where we are trustful, in a way that, unless you were born rich, it is very difficult to understand. They think, deep in their hearts, that they are better than we are because we had to discover the compensations and refuges of life for ourselves. Even when they enter deep into our world or sink below us, they still think that they are better than we are. They are different."

    F. Scott Fitzgerald

  64. I'm glad someone tried to set 4:30 straight.

    I am local. HS grad. Family. Rent. Work hard. Just stating my own experience. I didn't need that insinuating ignorant rant. I got colas working as a valet attendent. I got colas pulling lumber at a mill. I still get a annual review and raise. Why? Because i work my ass off to support my family and i make money for my employer and they value my work ethic.

    Frankly if you have a job that dosnt give you a cola/raise after a year of work...quit. start your own business or work for someone else who values employee tenure.

    now. I'm off to bed. Gotta get up early so I can make the kids breakfast before I go to work. Superiority complex and all...

  65. It's hard to make a living here. As has been pointed out several times, we are one of the lowest average hourly wage earning counties in the state. It's hard for working people, and as far as working jobs go, the county has about the best paying jobs in the county. That's just a fact.

    But it can't last. The county is authorized an annual levy lid lift of 1% while the union has negotiated annual salary increases of 3%. The rest of the general fund has to be perennially cannibalized to make up the difference, but we're coming to the end of the line for that strategy. Compensation already makes up more than 75% of the general fund, if I'm not mistaken. There isn't much left to cannibalize.

    The only way out is to either reduce COLAs for County workers, slash wages, and reduce staff further every year OR grow the economy, assuming we don't raise taxes some other way. If we grew our economy, we would experience increased revenues without increased tax rates. However, with the CAO, SMP, and all the other regulations hitting us, growing the economy isn't likely to happen. We'll be blessed if the economy only stagnates and doesn't shrink. If it shrinks, we'll have to cut staff, wages, and COLAs even more.

    We do not live sustainably in this county, and I'm talking economics, not environment. We cannot give people COLAs and other salary adjustments exceeding the levy lift rate while we pass more and more regulations that will simultaneously shrink our economy while increasing the workload for county staff. We can borrow more, and I suspect that is what will happen in the short-term because it is the easy way out.

    Sooner or later (probably sooner), something will have to give. We either will need to start growing our year-round economy or shrink the regulatory burden to what a dead rural economy can afford, which isn't much.

    That's when the Friends can declare victory because then everyone will be out of work except them.

  66. from 4:30

    My apologies to any hard working person I've offended.

    11:45 I was ignorant! I admit it! My extended family, w/all it's various businesses and lively hoods, has never experienced the COLA world. I'm not a liberal democrat by any means and not a republican either. I don't expect handouts and often I think they create dependence that is not healthy.

    One of the things I'm struggling with..and meant to that I think some of the County employees are not worth their wages. Some people milk that system and do become dependent. Did you read Lovel's sob story about how she has kids in college and the county check after the first council election was her last income? And that she couldn't work because she was campaigning?

    It inspired a belief that she sees the county as responsible for her life. She values her "service" much more than I do.

    And I can't help wondering what she's up to now. Has she found some grant? Or grant funded "job"?

    Rereading Oct 18 12:44...very embarrassed...funny post.

  67. @4:30
    May seem like you're being jumped on, but you keep putting your foot in your mouth.
    County workers, like ANY worker, are worth what someone wants to pay them, and what the market will bear.
    Outside the road crew and the front desk gals I believe most County positions require a Bachelor's or Masters degree, and people with those don't typically work for $10/hour.
    Also, how would you quantify most county workers are not worth their pay? Do you know what ALL of them do on a day to day basis? Sorry, but your complaint typically comes from a low-wage earner (which all of us were at one time or another) who is jealous of others while at the same time unwilling to take those steps necessary to improve your position in life.
    If you're unhappy with the SIZE of government that's well and good, that's different than paying appropriate compensation to those who only fault was to take the time to go to college and then apply for the position this county advertised.

  68. @4:30

    The County workers are not responsible for the budget, your elected officials are.
    County workers don't appoint themselves, your elected officials do.
    County workers don't appoint people to committees or commissions, your elected officials do.

    And if the elected officials are responsible for all of the above and continually fuck it up...then what do you say of those who continually vote them in?

  69. @10:56

    I'm happy to put my foot in my mouth, if that means defending @4:30. I am not a low wage earner either. I am also highly educated. So what.

    I DEFINITELY agree that many county employees are not worth their salary, as a totally separate issue from the size of government. No one will ever convince me that Rachel Dietzman is worth her salary. No one will ever convince me that Ed Hale or Shireene Hale are worth their salary. I feel the same about dozens of other highly paid, and supposedly qualified, staff.

    No one puts their foot in their mouth like @10:56 who seems to think that anyone with a college degree or higher is automatically better. There are plenty of college educated idiots, and we don't have to look very far to find them.

  70. @ 10:56

    I didn't say or mean "most" of the county employees. I said "some". I stand behind that and agree w/11:03.


    I talked to people during this last campaign who knew absolutely nothing about the CAO or it's re-creation. My belief is that the CAO was the thing that finally tipped the scale. And many of them were voting for Lisa and Lovel. One woman told me she voted for them just because they're women. (!)

    That's a sad state of affairs but in reality most of the people I talked to are hardworking people w/little or no extra time for keeping an eye on our local government.

  71. I think you miss the mark when you demonize or lump folks together, there are many county employees I know who are completely fed up with the few that make fools of themselves or are un-reasonable. Call out those who are fools, and support those who are doing what they can to stem the tide, but most importantly...STOP VOTING IN LEFTIST, WHO, APPOINT AND HIRE WHAT? MORE GODAMN LEFTY's not that godamn difficult to figure out.

  72. @ 1145p I think you confuse COLAs and raises. And there's something in government land called "step increases." COLAs are AUTOMATIC across-the-board cost of living adjustments given to a small group of employees (government and union) for nothing. All you have to do is breathe. Raises in the private world are what you get for being a hard worker. Government employees get step increases just for being there another year (or whatever period is set). The two worlds (private business and government employment) are radically different.

  73. @6:23
    You're obviously ignorant.
    I have NEVER worked for a private corporation that didn't offer COLAS or scheduled pay raises, private corporations that aren't completely devoid of equanimity find this to be standard operating procedure.
    Agai I will stress to you that is the policies and laws passed by liberal Democrats that are destroying business and opportunities for people.

  74. This is, I think, an excellent discussion.

    As with all employees there are good and not so good. (I had 300+ at one time) I agree it is the responsibility of those at the top to be fair and to be fun. Walk around, talk to "your" people.

    It has been shown in ever measure, employee centered management will trump job centered management every time. (Less sick call in, better communication with a supervisor etc.)

    Actually it is not difficult to see those that need to be cut and those who are achievers.

    Our situation seems to be more basic. And the nay sayers love it.

    They say and rightly so, well you folks elected Rick and Bob and what has it got you?

    Certainly, not much.

  75. I'll tell you now
    No eternal reward will forgive us now for wasting the dawn!!

  76. @ 7:34

    I may be ignorant, as you claim, but I know the difference between COLAs (everyone gets them every year if the cost of living increases) and raises (these generally depend entirely on performance, at least outside the government step-increase scenarios.) Not sure what this has to do with left or right.

    This discussion began with the cogent observation that our County leaders approved (always in "executive session" and never with much information made available to citizens) a series of automatic COLAs across the board that will lead to County payroll expense growing by at least 3% each year, while the County generally has a 1% per year tax increase cap.

    Even though at least one candidate promised us an effort to cut County expenses by 5% (Rick Hughes), we have seen no such movement in the initial budget discussions. In fact. Bob Jarman finally had enough and asked the County Manager why departments just present new higher numbers and no real discussion of why.

    The budget discussion under Pete Rose had a tentative budget for the new year published by now online, I think. Online now is just the tentative for THIS YEAR.

    So, we continue to hire planners and other "upper management" types who make in excess of $75,000 per year . . . how is this math going to work out? Get ready for one heck of a levy lift. This time they'll probably threaten senior services and 4H and sheriff again and add clean water and everything else in another charade designed to raise taxes despite the fact that the rest of us--outside government--haven't seen a real COLA or raise in many years.

  77. Remember how the Charter Commission said we should have a County Manager instead of a County Administrator, to save about $75,000 over Pete Rose's $150,000 salary? So how does that add up to $150,000 for the County Manager in 2014? TWICE what we were told the Manager should be paid--because the new County commissioners were going to be full-time and paid $75,000 each themselves, thereby absorbing much of the work done by Rose.


    Is there nothing that this County government won't increase?

  78. @3:08 This County government won't increase your freedoms and liberties. Quite the contrary.

  79. This council is a major dissapointment. Across the board. The took all that power and pay away from a county administrator and have really done less then the previous council. Less harm...maybe but doing nothing is would be less harm. Full time pay to meet 1 & 1/2 days per week at most. Please...that's just not gonna cut it for me. Ill be looking for some new names next election. People ready to hit the ground don't get a free year to warm up on my dime. Pathetic.

  80. I spent 30 years in private industry as a professional. I can tell you that in periods such as what we have experienced since 2008/9 where all industry is and damn it "it is in the toilet, never did my companies offer annual increases automatically. there is only one industry climbing and that is the Government Sector. COLI during these times are ridiculous! When my dollars arent worth more than 60 % of what they were in 2007

  81. I would welcome a list from any member of the County Council as to what they feel they have done (accomplished) in the last year.

    I grant them, they have given us the doctor's pledge to first "Do No Harm," but gee whiz I was hoping for a little better than that.

    By the way; what's with the BIG panic over prop I? This thing as supported by lounge chair Fralick and Patty MINUTIA Miller had no chance of passing, BUT all of a sudden we get road signs and an expensive mailing from most of the folks who turned the County into a winner take all for the majority party.


    You like Lopez running things?

  82. I see Delindipshit and his screech-owl wife couldn't get any traction for their ridiculous assertion that Mike Carlson, John Lackey, and Tim Blanchard recuse from involvement in the CAO re-write in the local papers and has now slithered over to Orcas Issues...where Brian Ehrmantraut slaps them down, well done Brian.

    Dave, your sore loser cry-baby tantrums have done nothing but reveal to the world how and why California has become the regulatory nightmare it is - please Dorf off and move back to California where you belong.

  83. 10/21/13 listened to Randal Gaylord’s BS concerning victims services and his concern over reduction in same.
    it’s a pile of you know what, this because it is our PA that has gone out of his way to victimize via various enforcement measures and CD&P over issues that serve no public environmental or any useful purpose. There are your victim service funds Mr. prosecutor

  84. Yes, who do you call when your local PA is the bully that victimizes citizens when they are trying to "live" and your local planners and enforcers’ simply don’t consider you when they write laws that only serve themselves and maybe an appropriate number of illegal immigrants.
    I can tell you one thing, they dont respond well at "Victoms services"

  85. @ 302pm Does that mean that we don't have an approved budget for this year? How can that be?

  86. I for one, maybe the only one, am greatly relieved the PA, yes ours, with the unrelenting chutzpah (supreme self confidence) with this, his latest demanded pay raise, will continue to be able to put food on the table for the beloved.

    Truly, at 11K per month I really had knots he was not going to be able to skid by like the rest of us. Obviously, our wage setting board saw his need clearly.

    Poor devil.

  87. 7:14 a.m. Uh-oh, Susie is out of town and Dork is off his meds.

  88. The editor at Ocas Issues has now moved the letter by DD off of the main page and stopped comments after 18. Go to Older posts at the bottom of the main page to read the post and comments. Margie decided that a long letter on Horoscopes was more important--besides, she didn't like the way the discussion was proceeding. Make sure you read this thread and write a note to Orcas Issues editor about your Horoscope.

  89. Just read Colin Maycock's memo describing proposed SMA updates, which includes a recital that the update includes a "Mandatory shoreline restoration plan, implementation of which shall be voluntary". Huh?

  90. I'm glad you directed me to that fiasco! Actually entertaining to read.

    I applaud Brian, Royce, and Peg! Well spoken!

  91. The Dorf revealed the Machine's strategy for next election: anyone opposed to the Machine's candidate is a "Tea Party" "Ted Cruz" radical.
    Dorf seems to forget that in a County that is votes roughly 75% democratic it must've taken a hell of alot of democrats to vote against Lovell the Hut and Lisa Byers.

    Dorf, we already know what the answer is to what would David the Dorf and Janet Addle-brained do if there were CSA members on the PC - they'd stamp their feet, hold their breath, and cry - just like a typical leftist enviro-nut who believes anyone opposed to them should be silenced. I was particularly amused by you insinuation that Peg was trying to somehow trample on your right to freedom of speech, because you obviously don't mind attempting to do the same to those who support Mike Carlson and the rest.
    Like Royce said, you lost, do us all a favor and Dorf-off.

  92. I also read the SMP info. Having a restoration plan in the SMP is required by the state. The state cannot make the county implement it. It is a list of improvements that could be made if and when anyone chose to do so.

  93. I see that Randy got yet another raise from his cronys in county government. Way to go, Randy! That solid 7 hours of work you put in every month is really demanding, so you deserve a raise and fat salary while regular people (those not part of the government elite ruling class) are struggling to make ends meet.

    Will someone please challenge this guy in 2014?

  94. @6:33 David Dehlendorf's wife Susan recently quit the Planning Commission in a snit over not winning every vote. Suppose that has any connection to his recent attacks on the non-leftist PC members?

  95. Thanks , 9:03, for the clarification. Mandatory restoration made voluntary still sounds oxymoronic to me, though. Just sayin........

  96. Although why the Council would start the SMP first touch while the CAO is in litigation is beyond me (whole chunks of the CAO are incorporated into the SMP), people should take the time to look where their properties fall in the maps--how is that stretch of coast classified? If your area is built up but classified as "conservancy", you might want to comment to Council about that. No doubt the green-armbands will be out in force commenting on the SMP, and Council seems no more interested in making sense of it than it does of the CAO.

  97. In many jurisdictions "spot zoning" is illegal. Here's why. Likened properties within a zoning district must in fairness be treated equally. Think about someone down the street suddenly being able to build a four plex in a single family area.

    Where there is a property with a special circumstance that makes it deficient because of topography or other significant contributing factors a variance can be granted to bring that property up to snuff (value)with other surrounding properties in the same district.

    Looking at the maps, I see tons of spot zoning. It appears completely arbitrary decisions were made by the PC in total disregard of equal and fair play withing a zoning district.

    I suspect, some fool simply ran a finger along the shoreline and declared: "This looks critical, this looks residential, they got docks here, this to close to the RH resort, this is close to a known eel grass location, this is close to where my mother lives."

  98. Those maps in the SMP are not regulatory though, so there was no "spot zoning", something the PC cannot do anyways.

  99. So what are the maps for? We have all these pretty colored lines on the shoreline just because we need to show the PC did something?

    Also, I would say that any change to a property owners use classification needs to be made in writing, by registered letter, instead of this nonsense where the County throws up a website and demands everyone sort through it as if everyone somehow knows what is going on.

  100. Hot damn, # 100 !

  101. Yow! Congratulations. Let's blindfold our new winner, give 'em that really big stick and start swingin' at the Heronado Pinata.

    Full of goodies, free stuff, cool gear and a permit pass from CDPP. That's right. Whack the Pinata just so, and Do what ever you wand.

    That's because, through a special insider trade your humble editor has procured a little known loophole in the laws known only as "Zee Deal."

    But wait! There's More!

  102. So, I know it's not "swearin' Heron" Friday, but fuck me, is there a committee, board, or commision the godamn busy body leftist whackos aren't on or trying to get on?
    I mean fucking A, Rea, LisaB, Howie, Lovell the Hutt, Lisa B's gimp Justin (another ball-gag wearing sad excuse for a man) Zeee, the Dorfs...everyone of them a busy body gaggle of nattering naybobs....Dorf off all of you and move back to California, or where ever you came from already!

  103. 10:17 Take a deep breath. Anyone who can cram as much as you do into a few lines can make it more readable.

    We all need to be clear and concise because what is written here has to matter. Maybe it is just about the only place where it does.


    And you gotta love the "prove you're not a robot." I'm hooked on taking on most challenging one that comes up.

    I guess the editor has decided we readers have not done our full amount of criticism until the fog lifts on over 100 comments.

  104. Correction: The SMP is not really the product of the Planning Commission. The County has spent millions on developing it--all sorts of consultants, visioning, and Colin Maycock's 6 figure salary for a year or so. Granted, most of it was grant funds, but that just means we paid for it out of a different pocket.

    The PC agenda and calendar is, for some reason, dictated by Ms. Shireene, and she had it rammed through the PC, which in the past has always danced to her tune. The newer members put up as much resistance as possible, but the thing is a humongous montrosity. Get out and tell your Council so. Bob may still be listening. Jamie is in their pocket and who knows where Rick is these days. Certainly not voting to stay the CAO effective date, which is the only rational response, and therefore the SMP, which depends greatly on the flawed CAO, is he?

  105. 10:17

    Sorry, but all your adolescent name calling is just giving our opponents more ammunition when they call us crazy. Yes, we have freedom of speech. Yes, you can use silly names as much as you like. No, it does not help our cause.

  106. But ... we are incivil and crazy

    The difference is, the other guys are ideologically insane

    Hope that clears things up.

  107. And so it is clear, somewhere between the old typewriter, a worthwhile contribution to consignment treasures, tossed at the old gravel pit, and the new flack vested presence coming to Spring Street, complete with holding cells...will they share... how's that taxpayer lunch anyway? We find ourselves, or maybe we can't even see to that, asking what?

    Has clear thinking and practical thought gone into a beer bottle? Hello Rick!

    As a basic base, yes, those who pay, (and all of us pay big at the end of this month,) how about an simple explanation from any council member as to what the hell is going on?


    Presently, there seems no direction, no real effort, only cashing the "pay" check.

    You can do better. I'm hoping it is a whole lot better. Please tell us what is getting DONE!

  108. Creative Anarchy Ordinance

  109. Wow I guess some congratulations are in order for reeling in a major grant (in the form of a long term GSA schedule lease) from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Spring Street in downtown Friday Harbor will be nothing if not safe. Is it true the underground parking will be converted into holding cells and interrogation rooms?

    Is this pork? Or just business as usual? I guess its business if you are the benefactor and socialism if someone else gets a juicy slice of Federali pie.

  110. Reeling back,there came the question of the PA digging his own trench and sticking a chair in it as a seat on the County Council.

    Someone said when there is a political power vacuum it won't last for long before a guy like Randy jumps in to take possession.

    So after some 100 + comments has any progress been made? Has the PA been stopped in his march to power?

    There is an election card on your desk. When you can vote for change, do so. These tea leaves mean much.

  111. @9:58

    Please tell me what that means. Is this about the international ferry?

  112. Mr. Heron - where is the Dehlendorf/Loring clown show review you teased us about the other day?

  113. On Orcas, the chorus is singing Ding Dong!

  114. Oh, very good!! The local mafia, ie Rick, has once again come out on top. Well, I feel so much better that Homeland security now has permanent presence on our islands now. Guess that will keep all us rebel rouser's under control. Don't count on it!!

  115. Ding Dong the Witch is dead!

  116. help! What is this about homeland security? Could someone please explain?