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The Hammer, Vol. LV

Attending to that meeting attendance thing

By Ron Judd Executive Editor

Your Son/Daughter/Councilmember May Have Attendance Issues: Hammer is hearing some distinct, mostly individual howls of indignation after a reader penned a Guest Commentary last week, dutifully reporting attendance records of Whatcom County Council members. Seems like a simple solution to this problem presents itself. (And no, it’s not going back to ignoring the issue.)

Speaking of That: Seems to Hammer that, given the benefits, perks and responsibilities of public servanthood, being present, camera-on, and action-ready for regular public meetings is not a big ask. But we are old-fashioned that way.

By Any Other Name: Some of the stands of DNR timber being offered up for logging contracts, our intrepid reporter Julia Lerner notes, bear names from song titles or lyrics of the Grateful Dead. We’re thinking maybe expanding the genre might produce forest names befitting their locale here on the soggy side of the Cascade Crest.

Just to Get It Rolling: “Buckets of Rain,” “Boulevard of Broken Dreams,” “Miles From Nowhere.” “Five Feet High and Rising.” Don’t be shy, folks. You have our address.

The Line Forms Here: Quite the Brouhaha down the road in Burlington over the selection of a new school superintendent. Residents in the majority-Latino district are calling for more diverse candidates, school board members are happy with those they already have. Forecast calls for an interesting local election season for district board seats in the fall. 

Meanwhile, In The Buckeye State: Several politicians, including Gov. Mike DeWine, Rep. Bill Johnson and Michael Regan, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, were described as “gingerly” drinking tap water from a home in East Palestine, in the area of the recent derailment of a train laden with toxic chemicals. Sippin’ and slidin’ their way to public-accountability greatness.

Difference Between Newsmakers There and Here in (Not to Mention Any Names) Ferndale: The Ohioans actually put the water where their mouths were.

Then Again: There’s always the possibility they’ll all be dead next week. But at least they’ll have gone out doing the TV thing they loved best. 

Hard Stop: We know they’re trying hard to line up the public services with the peeps, but we just think it’s a step too far to see the City of Bellingham open up a Department of Ill-timed Stoplights.

The Hammer is swung on Wednesdays, sometimes Thursdays. These things take time.

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