Clean Energy‎ > ‎

Whatcom County Charter Review 2015 (Archived Page)







VOTE TO REJECT PROPOSITION 1 TO PROTECT YOUR RIGHT TO VOTE FOR ALL OF YOUR ELECTED REPRESENTATIVES.

VOTE TO APPROVE PROPOSITION 9 TO PRESERVE FAIR ELECTIONS BY PROVIDING FIVE FAIR AND EQUAL COUNTY COUNCIL DISTRICTS.

The seven members of the Whatcom County Council have one of the most important votes on the proposal to build North America's largest coal terminal at the Cherry Point Aquatic Reserve. Following the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) currently being prepared, the County Council will cast the only local vote on whether or not to build the coal terminal project.


But the coal industry isn't taking "no" for an answer. In 2014, they funded candidates for the Whatcom County Charter Review Commission, and now their Commissioners are trying to change the way we elect our local officials with Proposition 1, splitting up voters with district-only voting, so they might ensure a pro-coal majority on the County Council for the next decade.

Proposition 1 is an attempt to guarantee local approval for the coal export terminal at Cherry Point. Proposition 9 for five fair and equal districts prevents a coal industry take over by providing fair representation for everyone.



Reject Proposition 1 - Here's why.

District-only voting as proposed in Proposition 1 is a scheme influenced by the coal industry to help get their project approved at Cherry Point. Don't take our word for it -- click here to read how Charter Review Commissioners made this connection their own words.

Here's what District-Only Voting (Proposition 1) will do: 
  • Take away your right to vote on County Councilors. Currently, you can vote for all seven people who represent you on the County Council. Under the scheme, you would only be allowed to vote for three.
  • Institute minority rule. Even if a majority of the County’s voters continue reject candidates supported by the coal industry, they would still be able to secure four safe seats on the County Council because of how districts are drawn.
  • Lock in their scheme indefinitely. Because the policy is likely to be highly unpopular, the Commission is also proposing amendments to keep voters from getting a chance to reconsider – instituting unanimous vote requirements and prohibitions on future amendments to the election section of the Charter.

REJECT PROPOSITION 1 TO PROTECT YOUR RIGHT TO VOTE FOR ALL OF YOUR ELECTED REPRESENTATIVES.



Approve Proposition 9 -- Here's why.


Proposition 9 was placed on the ballot after Whatcom County residents like you collected 2,100 signatures demanding the County Council take action. After an exhaustive public hearing with lopsided testimony in favor of putting this option on the ballot, the Whatcom County Council voted 6-1 to add a reasonable alternative to the partisan extremist proposal from the obscure Charter Review Commission.

Proposition 9 preserves fair elections and provides better representation by creating five fair and equal County Council districts.














  • Population growth should be reflected. Proposition 9 for five fair and equal County Council districts updates our County Charter to address population growth. Since the three districts we currently use were originally created, the population of Whatcom County has doubled -- though the districts have remained the same. Five fair and equal districts provides the necessary update to recognize this growth and keep our districts in line with state law.

  • Three districts are out of date. The current system is a relic of our historic Commissioner system and needs to be updated. Because they have not been updated, they currently run in violation of state law, which prohibits the division of communities of interest like Bellingham.

  • You deserve your own representatives. Currently, every rural district in Whatcom County includes parts of Bellingham, which means rural voters must compete with Bellingham in every County Council election. Rural voters aren't guaranteed their own voice or their own representative under the three district system. Five fair and equal districts will provide rural communities with districts that don't include Bellingham, so every community can have their own say and their own representatives.


VOTE TO APPROVE PROPOSITION 9 FOR FIVE FAIR AND EQUAL COUNTY COUNCIL DISTRICTS.

PRESERVE FAIR ELECTIONS.
PROVIDE BETTER REPRESENTATION.

http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=29A.76.010

Who is supporting our campaign?



The people of Whatcom County -- just like you! 

Countless current and former local elected officials have endorsed the proposal for five fair and equal districts. Unlike the district-only voting campaign, our ballot measure committee has taken NO money from established political parties or out-of-state financial interests. RE Sources's campaign for five fair and equal districts is volunteer powered and 100% locally funded.

See for yourself -- click here to read our filings with the Public Disclosure Commission. Our contributors are people like you: small businesses, local elected officials, and individual supporters located right here in Whatcom County who are concerned about the future of their community.


Note: Donations made to our Charter Review campaign are not tax-deductible.

Paid for by RE Sources for Sustainable Communities, 2309 Meridian Street, Bellingham WA 98225