Civil Disobedience, Charter City Change, council members taking ownership of their decisions
This just in from one of the several splinter groups formed around the Port Angeles City Council’s recent decision on continued fluoridation. Signs will soon appear at all high-traffic areas including the east and west entry of Highway 101.and the route leading from Hurricane Ridge.
Signs to read: “ Welcome to Port Angeles where we add Lead, Arsenic and Fluoride to our water on orders from council members Gase, Kidd, Downie and Colllins. Bon Appetit”
Now that should get the attention of the hospitality community. Tourists who may have been planing a meal or a stay in Port Angeles will surely move on to Sequim or other areas not boasting added toxins in their water supply.
Believe it or not negotiations are under way with the city allegedly offering to hold yet another election and promising to abide by the results of this one more election. Anti-Fluoride protesters say “fooey, we wont get fooled again.” Furthermore, the former Washington State Supreme Court decision rejected the notion of a binding popular vote on fluoridation. That decision is left to the council.
Over the years.there have been at least three votes by city residents and all voted NO FLUORIDE yet these four city council members voted to continue it anyway. Most likely the city realized the level of angst that is simmering in the city and they hope to promise one more sugarplum of a vote just to dissipate the level of energy now focused on the city council.
Pay Water Bill into Escrow Account
Other plans include each and every water customer in the city starting a new and separate savings account. The name of the account would be something like: “Escrow: Water Bill” The way this works is for anyone receiving a bill for utilities from the city of Port Angeles should subtract the amount of the water and waste water bill and put that amount into their Escrow Water Bill account. Then send a copy of the deposit slip to the city to show that the water bill has been paid into escrow and the city gets its money when the customer gets clean pure water free of deadly chemicals like lead, arsenic and fluoride. Resident should pay the city for the electric and other non-water portions of the utility bill.
This type protest is only good so long as people don’t abuse the process by stopping payment on all their utility bill.
Naturally there will be recall efforts but Washington state law makes it very difficult to remove an elected council member. It is actually easier to change the form of city government than it is to eject a city council member. Changing to a Charter City would effectively dismiss all the sitting council members and voters can get a new slate.
As you might guess one of the splinter groups protesting fluoride is researching the law on forming and re-forming municipal government in Washington. In fact Port Angeles has changed its form of governance one or more times in the recent past.
Because of the low turnout for the last municipal election it will take only around 500 signatures to get the resolution for a change in the form of city government on the ballot. The vote could be as soon as August of 2016. A lot of things could enter the fray if the form of government changed to a Charter City structure with a strong mayor and election of council members by district instead of all at-large elections.
All those cushy retirement programs now in place could be revisited. All those who put Port Angeles into the problems we have could have some of their bennies taken away. There is much in store for the next few months and it seems there are residents willing to take up the challenge.
With the Coho ferry absent for a couple of months Port Angeles will have an opportunity to stew in its own juices for the next 8 weeks without too much bad press leaking over to the tourists normally arriving by ferry. A lot of change could be wrought in the next 8 weeks or, it could last into the spring and summer. This could be decided by any one of the forced fluoride four. Now we get to see if there is any real leadership within any of these four.
Watch this space.