October 8, 2019
Meeting was called to order by Kaj at 7:30am. Jack led the flag salute.
Jack moved to accept October 1 meeting minutes, seconded by Dick. Motion passed. One spelling correction by email to Brian Garrett’s name.
Diane Haffner, Matt Jordan
Program: District 2 candidates for Clallam County Charter Review Commission — Steven Wyall, Kraig Kyllo, Marolee Smith, Wendy Clark Getzin, Ron Cameron, Nina Richards and Norma Turner. Joe Murray, running for District 3, cannot attend that forum so he is participating today.
Candidates gave opening remarks.
Nina thinks critically through working with students, and would do a good job if elected. Norma said as many people voted for commissioners, as voted for past charter review candidates. Wendy thinks the amendments made that were not voted on is concerning and the listening sessions are helpful. Marolee said our charter is good but could use some changes. It’s easy to attend a meeting and ask for discussion on a ballot issue. Kraig wants to make things better. Ron suggests the CRC brand themselves as they take action and make it public to have interest moving forward. Steve does not want to be like Seattle. People like it here and he wants to continue to develop why. Joe feels his voice will be heard in the charter election just like the commissioners.
Joe said it depends on what it says but it is worth considering a change to the charter to disallow income tax. Steve wondered why we need one, it depends on the budget and he would want to hear why. He’d keep the status quo until hearing an actual debate. Ron is opposed due to its generality. Kraig would get input from people. Marolee said WA has a sin tax and can raise property tax up to 1% each year. Taxes don’t go down, and it would be challenged by the attorney general. Wendy is for local control but such an allowance would be a waste of efforts if it doesn’t exist right now. Norma said WA has the most regressive tax rate in the nation and is opposed to anything that disenfranchises the public. It woudl limit any future discussions. Nina would keep the option open.
Nina is for electing countywide commissioners and for electing the DCD. Norma doesn’t see the need to revisit it. If both were elected why would elected commissioners take a land use issue from the DCD. Wendy believes in better voter representation for commissioners and to make good out of what has been voted on for DCD. Marolee said the prosecuting attorney should have sent the case to the attorney general for a decision when Mary Ellen was usurped. It is unclear what her responsibilities are. There is currently unfair representation of the districts. Ron said it is difficult to meet with commissioners because it has to be posted for two or more at once. People want an elected DCD, they need to fine tune the job description. Steve said it is not in the best interest to over-rule the DCD vote and is neutral. Joe needs to look more into the commissioner isse and is unclear as to the status of the DCD.
Joe wondered if the population of the jail would be less if Clallam hired another prosecuting attorney. Steve said he approached the prosecuting attorney who said he answers to the board, but because there is no board he doesn’t need to answer questions. Ron said it’s outside the realm of the commission, there has een talk of adding another attorney but the jail is manageable now. Kraig agrees with Ron, there should be better lines of communication for answering questions. Maolee said the commission can’t affect the prosecuting attorney because it is state elected. They can split out the coroner. Wendy passed. Norma said it is outside their realm and Nina agreed.
Jim M. moved to extend the meeting up to 15 minutes, seconded by Edna. Motion passed.
If we didn’t have a home rule charter what would be the reason to have one?
Norma said if we didn’t have one, we’d fall under state rules and not have the option of 5 commissioners. Wendy said for local representation, legislators don’t understand Clallam as much, except Mike Chapman and Derek Kilmer. Marolee added we’re independent and need more say in local government. Kraid had nothing to add. Ron said it’s a unique opportunity to do what we want to do. Steve doesn’t want to take it for granted saying we need to take ourselves because of our location. Joe said it was an opportunity for the public to participate in government.
All candidates have read the Home Rule Charter.
Candidates gave closing statements.
Meeting adjourned at 8:42am.