Letters to the Editor: October 10-16, 2019


The Editor:

I would like to publicly thank the following people who compassionately helped my family with my mother’s tragic accident at the Blaine boat launch:

Officer Skylar Deffinbaugh and sergeant Brent Greene of the Blaine Police Department;

Mr. and Mrs. Guy De Rosa of Meridian Towing;

Mrs. Dennie Linde of Safe Harbor Funeral Services;

And the many first responders, divers and other personnel involved in the recovery of my mother at the boat launch.

Jeff Lenzner, son of Mrs. Eleanor Lenzner

City withheld by request


The Editor:

Having been a resident of Blaine for the past twelve years, I would like to recommend Richard May for Blaine City Council, ward 1 (position 1). Richard is a successful businessman who is civic-minded and neighborly – someone who has a genuine enthusiasm for solving problems.

Having met and talked with Richard, I feel that he is able to see both sides of an issue and therefore would work well with other council members. Additionally, I believe he would be fair in his decision-making process and would employ his impressive political knowledge regarding matters important to our city. These qualities make him ideal to sit on the council. Please for vote for Richard May for Blaine City Council.

Eric Lewis



The Editor:

In response to Mr. Helle’s letter to the editor posted online on October 2:

Indeed, most Canadians travel to the U.S. without incident; however, that does not change the operation of U.S. expedited removal laws or the effect of apparent internal Customs and Border Protection (CBP) policy changes on many honest Canadian travelers and investors.

I stand by my initial summary cited in Mr. Makan’s article, that in the context of Canadians receiving expedited removal, “You are guilty and have to rebut that presumption.”

Specifically, Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) 214(b) states that non-citizens shall be presumed to be immigrants (e.g. green card holders) until they establish to the satisfaction of the inspecting CBP officer they are not. INA 212(a)(7)(A) says that immigrants are inadmissible unless they have proof of their immigrant status (e.g. green card). INA 235(b)(1) says that such inadmissible non-citizens shall be summarily removed, resulting in a five-year bar. As correctly noted, CBP officers may permit the applicant to withdraw in lieu of mandatory expedited removal; however, this is entirely discretionary (INA 235(a)(4)).

The uptick in expedited removals noted in the article is in this context – not for discovered fraud or deliberate misrepresentations or other grounds of inadmissibility. While I am in agreement with Mr. Helle that CBP officers are both proficient and professional while performing a complex law enforcement and administrative undertaking, the real question is simply this: why do Canadian travelers, after honestly disclosing their intentions, increasingly face five-year bars, instead of being permitted to withdraw their applications for admission, as was previously the practice?

Andrew Hayes, Millar & Hayes, PC



The Editor:

There are two fine candidates in the north county running for county council. Natalie McClendon is running in the new coastal district 5, which is west of the interstate and north of Bellingham to the border. Natalie is on the planning commission and is well aware of the issues facing Whatcom County. She is co-owner of a small business and knows the struggles that small business owners face.

Brian Estes is running in district 4 and has worked as a government watchdog for 30 years. Both candidates believe in investing in future generations by working to meet the challenge of climate change while creating more family-wage jobs. They support treatment for people with mental health and addiction problems and affordable housing so that people have some warmth and security. They will look to local solutions to ensure that there is water for fish, farmers and families and not to Olympia while protecting our farmlands. These candidates do not receive campaign funding from the fossil fuel industry and are supported at the grassroots level, another good reason to support them.

Ballots are coming soon; please vote.

Sheri Lambert



The Editor:

As a resident of county council district 5, who do I want to represent me and my neighbors?

Someone smart, energetic, effective, community-minded and informed about all the issues facing our district and the county. Someone who understands small business first-hand. Someone who will protect current employment at Cherry Point and work to encourage family-wage jobs in the industries of the future. Someone who listens well and has the temperament and judgment to serve on behalf of everyone in the county. Someone who is committed to a safe and healthy environment for us, our children and our grandchildren.

That someone is Natalie McClendon, and I’m voting for her as the clear best choice to represent district 5.

Myra Ramos

Lummi Island


The Editor:

Bobby Briscoe should be re-elected for Bellingham port commissioner. In Bob’s long and very successful career as a fisherman, he is known for his foresight, innovation, energy (not many people top him in that department), fairness, humor and competency. Having actively dealt with ports all up and down the west coast of the United States, Bob is uniquely qualified to examine port issues within the context of other port operations.

We need at least one commissioner whose livelihood is actually affected by port actions. On the other hand, my many experiences with Bob tell me he is a global thinker, who naturally thinks of the larger picture.

We need politicians like Bob Briscoe. The many organizations that endorse him know that too.

Shirley Zuanich



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