The following is a copy of an email sent to Clallam County Commission Chairman, Mark Ozias, representing Sequim and the east side.
I take objection to the manner in which he chaired a hearing on the expenditure of almost one million dollars which, for months was disguised as a grant “for construction of a Boys and Girls Club” but actually intended to pay to crush 33 perfectly good homes owned by the Peninsula Housing Authority–the actual recipients of the grant. Numerous county departments and agencies forwarded a false narrative intended to deceive the public to the actual use of the grant funds.
Lest you think this is just a “do good” proposition, there is, of course, a profit motive in the deal. There are “private investors” whom the housing authority will not name. They will prosper in the deal.
A proper hearing should discover whom the commissioners are putting us in bed with.
Hello Commissioner Ozias
I object, under the “Appearance of Fairness Doctrine,” to the manner in which you chaired the Public Hearing April 11th on the Opportunity Fund Grant to the Peninsula Housing Authority, heretofore disguised as a grant to “construct a Boys and Girls Club.”
You exhibited the appearance of bias when you arbitrarily and capriciously instituted a time limit on public participation and comment allowed at said hearing. When you chaired a similar hearing, at which I informed you had been improperly noticed, you proceeded to hold the hearing anyway and allowed proponents to provide testimony without invoking any time limits. Most of the proponents allowed to provide testimony at that first hearing exceeded the time limit set at the second hearing at which you not only invoked a time limit but also interrupted my testimony to inform, “you have about a minute left.”
These actions, individually and collectively, exhibit an appearance of bias.
As you recall you had an earlier hearing that day on a separate matter and while most of those giving testimony exceeded the time limit set you never cut them off nor told them how much time they had left. I was the only one that day, and in fact in the past four years, held to time limitations at a public hearing. This is certainly an appearance of bias.
At the first bungled hearing you allowed proponents unlimited time to support the subject of the hearing. At the second hearing, after you cleared up the improper notice issue, you set time limits and enforced them only on me, an opponent of the subject of the hearing.
Proponents had unlimited time at the first hearing. Opponents were treated unfairly and you exhibited bias and the appearance of bias.
Also, there is ample evidence you have had ex parte communications with proponents outside the hearing and outside the presence of those who opposed the subject of the hearing. You have had ex parte communications with Alan Barnard, Norma Turner and others.
Also, since the Opportunity Fund Advisory Board was appointed by your fellow commissioner, Randy Johnson, and since Johnson fully developed the existing advisory board as well as the current iteration of the Economic Development Council which manages the Opportunity Fund and served as president of the EDC for many years he has a conflict of interest and an appearance of bias in sitting in on this hearing and further in voting for the adoption of the outcome of said hearing.
For these reasons: bias, appearance of bias, ex parte communications, conflict of interest, improper notice and false statements by the county administrator in his “staff report” I call upon you to void that hearing, overturn the results of the hearing of April 11, 2017 and reconvene a fair and unbiased hearing absent all those who have a conflict of interest, have given false statements on the subject, and those who ignored those false statements and gave cover to those uttering false statements even as they were printed in the official newspaper in an ad paid for by taxpayers and authored by the county administrator who gave false testimony in the run-up to both hearings.
“As developed in case law, the appearance of fairness doctrine is
intended to protect against actual bias, prejudice, improper influence,
or favoritism. It is also aimed at curbing conditions that create
suspicion, misinterpretation, prejudgment, partiality, and conflicts of
interest. If an action is subject to the appearance of fairness doctrine,
then all legally required public hearings, as well as the participating
public officials, will be scrutinized for apparent fairness.”