Stanwood/Camano News

Letter to the Editor published 4/23/18

from: Dean Enell

Consider candidates’ environmental views

Considering Earth Day, maybe it’s time to review local candidates’ environmental views.

In District 2 (Camano/North Whidbey) Janet St. Clair is challenging incumbent Island County Commissioner Rick Hannold. They are very different candidates indeed.

1. Rick believes climate change is “overstated” and that 408 parts per million of greenhouse gases we’ve pumped into the atmosphere has little to do with it. He feels the changing climate is predestined, nothing we can or should do.

Janet accepts the view of 97 percent of creditable climate scientists and believes that we have the ability and obligation to limit greenhouse gases.

2. Our local Conservation Futures Program has conserved over 3,200 acres of county rural heritage and public beach access; it’s popular and it works. Janet recognizes the value and would fully support it.

Rick likes to identify as a supporter but consistently votes to reduce its funding in real dollars by denying the typical yearly 1 percent cost of living increase.

3. We’ve had a Growth Management Act plan around here since 1998. It’s state mandated and contains land use regulations that preserve those qualities of life that islanders have identified as desirable, like “hanging onto our rural character.”

Rick touts our GMA accomplishments but voted to spend our money for an outside attorney. He voted to spend even more to defend that private attorney when sued by our county prosecutor and lost 13-0 before the State Supreme Court.

Janet supports state GMA law and would fulfill our obligations using our own qualified legal department.

4.  As for Navy jet noise around Outlying Field, NAS Whidbey, Rick doesn’t oppose it. Janet wants to promote needed discussion.

While both candidates have considerable differences, Janet has the background, credentials and inclination to decide issues on facts and data, to lead us into the future (see


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