Letters to the Editor -- December 19, 2002

Published on Thu, Dec 19, 2002
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Letters to the Editor


Thank you
The Editor:
We would like to thank our family and friends for all the kindness and caring they have extended to us in our time of sorrow.
Mabel, Brad, Sherry & Kathy Gilden
Blaine

Airport for favored few
The Editor & Blaine City Council:
I would like to comment on an article in the December 12 issue of The Northern Light entitled No Runway Expansion Without Economic Expansion. The article stated that, “while the option of closing, moving or leaving the airport unimproved were on Ketchum’s list of possibilities at the beginning of the study period, they were not in the draft report.” David Ketchum is an independent consultant who was hired to provide the city with recommendations for the future of the airport.
Are we going to consider all the options provided by our consultant, a professional who was hired to give his unbiased opinions? It appears to me that we are only exploring the option of expanding the airport. Does the economic benefit of the property have to be coupled with the expansion of the airport or can the property better serve the city if developed in a different way? Here are some questions I think we need to ask as we consider the future of this property.
1. Not too long ago the Port of Bellingham director was asked to comment on Blaine’s long term economic future. The airport property was brought up as part of what could be a huge economic benefit to Blaine if developed. Why as a city do we only consider using that property as an airport that benefits only a few, when we could potentially develop it in a different way to benefit the city as a whole?
2. In the 1980s there was a vote on whether or not to keep the airport. Airport proponents were able to lobby for the current use but opponents were not allowed to suggest other potential uses. This vote was 15 years ago. I think that if the citizens were asked to consider putting 10 million dollars into developing the airport or 10 million to develop the property in another way which will be economically beneficial to all of Blaine rather than a few, the vote would not be to throw the money at the airport.
3. The airport currently has a debt to the city street department for streets that were vacated to create the airport. The airport will ask for money to condemn neighboring properties if they can’t force the owners to give them easements. Is this the will of the whole city?
For 20 years we have been told the airport will be economically viable. Today the airport still remains a recreational airport that only benefits a few at the cost of the whole city. I think it is time we look at our return on our investment for this cost. It is now time to consider all our options and ask ourselves this question. Is the airport the best use of the property for the city as a whole?
Bill Dodd
Blaine

Sorely missed
The Editor:
Many thanks to both Dr. Gordon Dolman and Blaine police chief Bill Elfo. No matter what personal differences you may have with these men, they both have done great things within their respective areas, with the hands they were dealt.
We have lost two great leaders of this community which will be hard to replace no matter where we look or for however long we look.
These men have attained respect not only from within their own areas, but also the state and the county. Their opinions are respected and they have handled their positions with dignity and respect for all who have had dealings with them.
If there ever were an argument for cloning, here are two men that should be cloned.
These men have left wonderful legacies through their accomplishments in education and law enforcement, with innovative ideas that have strived to stay in touch with the times. They have also worked and gotten excellent working relationships with other agencies and districts.
I would encourage the council and the district to recognize these men and their accomplishments with plaques hung in their respective areas.
You both will be missed for your years of dedication to this town and its people.
Dave White
Blaine

The Editor:
Dr. Dolman has given many years of service to the Blaine school district and for this, our community owes him our deepest respect and gratitude.
I am taking this opportunity to strongly urge the Blaine school board of directors to seriously consider candidates outside the Blaine school district to be selected to fill Dr. Dolman’s position.
It is my opinion that there are significant personnel decisions to be made. These decisions involve the administrative position at the high school within the areas of curriculum and instruction, as well as the director of athletics. The successor to Dr. Dolman must possess the qualifications necessary to comprehensively evaluate and synthesize these two individuals accurately and objectively, in order to make the much needed changes for our district.
I strongly urge the Blaine school district board of directors to move beyond their comfort zones as this vital selection begins. The citizens of Blaine owe it to themselves and to our community to become more actively involved and informed during this executive process.
Pat Murphy
Blaine

Do a good deed
The Editor:
The Boy Scouts of Troop 16 will be picking up Christmas trees in Birch Bay, Birch Bay Village, Blaine, and Semiahmoo on Saturday, January 4 and delivering them to Recomp for recycling.
If you would like us to pick up your tree, please remove all ornaments and stand, place the tree on the curb in front of your house by 8 a.m. Saturday morning. We will drive around with our scouts and pick up trees. If your house can be hard to find, please call 733-9517 and leave us directions. Be sure to leave your name and phone number in case we need to contact you on Saturday.
If you would like to leave us a donation, please mail it to P.O. Box 1404, Bellingham, WA 98227. We appreciate any donations, and all money we receive directly supports our outdoor programs.
Thank you, and may you have a safe and happy new year!
Boy Scout Troop 16
Bellingham

Who knows what lurks
The Editor:
I am writing in response to the recent coverage of the park upgrade at Alder and Cedar streets in Birch Bay.
This land is already a park in that it is a refuge for animals and has several bike, dog walking, strolling trails throughout the woods. It is a natural little area enjoyed by many in the neighborhood. However, it cannot be used to the extent it has been in the past due to the unfortunate circumstances of having a Level 2 sex offender living within two blocks of the park and even worse, having an untreated, unsupervised Level 3 sex offender on Alder Street across the street from the formerly well-used park.
This Level 3 sex offender has molested several children in the past and has used wooded vacant areas to do so. This is information I read off the official warnings the Whatcom County sheriff’s officers knocked on our doors to give us.
All the parents in the area watch the neighborhood kids when they are out playing and riding their bikes, etc. We are trying to maintain a facade of normalcy for our kids. Kids should be allowed to ride bikes in their own neighborhood and be able to walk to see their friends, but due to our new neighbors, our kids’ budding independence is being eroded.
In conclusion, I would urge the parks board to research the registered offenders in the area before encouraging families to use the area without full knowledge of the possible dangers to their kids.
Mary Kay Phelps
Blaine

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Letters Policy
The Northern Light welcomes letters to the editor; however, the opinions expressed are not those of the editor. Letters must include name, address and daytime telephone number for verification. Letters must not exceed 350 words and may be edited or rejected for reasons of legality, length and good taste. Thank-you letters should be limited to 10 names. A fresh viewpoint on matters of general interest to local readers will increase the likelihood of publication. Writers should avoid personal invective. Unsigned letters will not be accepted for publication. Requests for withholding names will be considered on an individual basis. Only one letter per month from an individual correspondent will be published.

Please send your letter to:
225 Marine Drive, Blaine, WA 98230 or fax 360/332-2777.
E-mail:editor@thenorthernlight.com

Letters Policy

The Northern Light welcomes letters to the editor; however, the opinions expressed are not those of the editor. Letters must include name, address and daytime telephone number for verification. Letters must not exceed 350 words and may be edited or rejected for reasons of legality, length and good taste. Thank you letters are limited to five individuals or groups. A fresh viewpoint on matters of general interest to local readers will increase the likelihood of publication. Writers should avoid personal invective. Unsigned letters will not be accepted for publication. Requests for withholding names will be considered on an individual basis. Only one letter per month from an individual correspondent will be published.

Please email letters to letters@thenorthernlight.com