Whatcom Conservation District 2018 Supervisor Election

The Whatcom Conservation District holds an election for one supervisor each year.  Unlike all other elections, WCD supervisor elections are not held by the Whatcom County Auditors office, and you will not automatically receive a ballot.

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. DEADLINE PASSED: Before February 7th at 4 p.m.: request a ballot.  Fill out this online form before February 7th at 4pm.
  2. Mid-February: receive your ballot in the mail (we’re not sure when they will be mailed, but you can bet there will be chatter about this in our Facebook group).
  3. Also Mid-February: Read about the candidates.  Our recruiting committee sent these questions to the candidates and received responses from Alan Chapman and David Kroontje.
  4. Ballot return deadline is Tuesday, March 13th at 6p.m. (as far as I can tell from the WCD page).  If you are worried your ballot will be delayed in the mail, you can vote in-person at the WCD on Tuesday March 13th between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m.

Candidate Information

Riveters Collective has officially endorsed Alan B. Chapman.

  1. Alan B. Chapman
    Responses to RC Questions
  2. Larry Helm
  3. David M. Kroontje
    Responses to RC Questions

Candidate statements to the WCD

Still have questions?  Send us an email!

#TaxScamBill Response

Rally on 2 December 2017, 5pm, Bellingham City Hall

The GOP just passed a Tax Scam bill that will forever change the United States. But the fight is NOT OVER!  The house and senate bills still need to be reconciled.

The Tax Scam bill is a giveaway to the rich and an attack on the most vulnerable among us. It’s designed to take from our communities and line the pockets of the wealthy. At the same time it makes irreversible changes by opening up the Arctic to drilling and classifying fetuses as people.

Americans across the country are taking to the streets and need us to join them. Today at 5:00 p.m. in Whatcom County we are taking to the steps of Bellingham City Hall to make our voices heard.

Stand up today. Together. Take a stand for our health care, our environment, our neighbors, our community.

Join us today at 5:00 p.m. at Bellingham City Hall.

Come with signs. Come without signs.

Come with your friends, neighbors, family. Come alone to know that you aren’t.

Come to stand shoulder to shoulder for our country.


Voters Guides and Endorsements – 2017


Ballot hasn’t arrived?  Need a replacement? Call the Whatcom County Auditor 

Riveters Collective Endorsements

Candidate responses to the RC endorsement questionnaires

Lummi Indian Business Council Endorsements

Cascadia Weekly (see pages 7 and 8) 

Whatcom Democrats Endorsements

Progressive Voters Guide

The Stranger 

Whatcom Republicans


And if you like pictures:

LIBC Endorsements 2017


Wrench art by Kjersten Hayes

Call Governor Inslee Regarding the Cooke Aquaculture Farmed Fish Release

Here’s the Lummi Nation’s ask for support (plus one RC ask, #3) in responding to the Cooke Aquaculture farmed fish release near Cypress Island.

Call Governor Inslee

Hi, my name is _____ and I live in ______, Washington.

I’m calling to ask Governor Inslee to do three things:

1. Join the Lummi Nation in declaring a State of Emergency in response to the Cooke Aquaculture release of farmed Atlantic salmon near Cypress Island.

2. Coordinate recovery efforts immediately

3. Direct WA State employees to name Cooke Aquaculture in all media and documentation, and omit the company-contrived eclipse story, which is intentional misdirection.

# Background

On Saturday August 19th, a Cooke Aquaculture pen containing Atlantic salmon failed, and released more than 300,000 farmed fish into the Salish Sea near Cypress Island. The company, inexplicably, blamed the eclipse, though actual data show that tidal currents had been higher in previous days and in every other month of the year. This is not the first such release, and yet there are no alert systems or back-up systems for this kind of situation. Lummi Nation is responding, but wants the State’s support.

Jail Ballot Measure Votes: An Open Letter from the RC

Riveters Collective values a fair and compassionate justice system with decisions informed by data and community process. This is the community’s jail and should reflect our values. Acknowledging that Whatcom County’s existing jail requires upgrades at a minimum, we see an opportunity to implement a bold new vision. We expect and will support our elected officials in casting risky votes toward these ends.


We express our gratitude to county council members Todd Donovan, Barry Buchanan and Ken Mann for voting against sending an incomplete and costly jail proposal to the November ballot. The work of the Vera Institute of Justice and the Incarceration and Reduction Task Force is not complete, and while we don’t yet know what size our jail should be, in a recent email regarding the size of the proposed jail Vera wrote, “Using the correct population, one would arrive at a number more than 30 percent smaller.” That underscores a need to wait until the work is complete before developing a plan.


We are disappointed that county council member Rud Browne moved to put this costly jail on the ballot, and council members Carl Weimer, Barbara Brenner, and Satpal Sidhu voted in favor. The two council members who invested the most time into finding solutions, Donovan and Buchanan, argued forcefully for waiting and stated clearly that this proposal isn’t ready and will fail again in November. Their hard work was ignored in favor of haste.


We are disappointed that city councilmembers Michael Lilliquist, Pinky Vargas, Gene Knutson, Terry Bornemann and Roxanne Murphy voted for the Jail Funding Use Agreement (JFUA). This vote was premature; we expect a  thoughtful, data-driven solution for our justice system. As citizens we are certain you have more power than you believe and wish you would have used your positions to urge the county to find a better approach. Given a choice between joining a poorly-researched project which perpetuates the prison industrial complex or declining to join and pursuing our own solution, we are ready to stand alone. At it’s core, the JFUA is a regressive sales tax that takes up 100-percent of our public safety tax capacity for the next 30 years. We also acknowledge that you each struggled with this decision, and we heard your statements as you voted yes — that you believed this was the best deal you could get for Bellingham in order to put some – albeit limited – funds into diversion programs. We thank city councilmembers April Barker and Dan Hammill for clearly expressing our shared values.


This year, Riveters Collective will work to defeat the jail ballot measure and will take pride in our work to find a better, more equitable path for justice in our community. We see better solutions on the horizon:

  • Bail reform so that people are not held in jail simply because they cannot pay
  • Fully funding treatment first, before incarceration
  • Diversion from jail, with incarceration as the last resort for those who are a danger to themselves or others; and
  • A new look at less expensive options for a new or renovated jail.


We believe that if we agree to put $110 million into a large jail in Ferndale, plus another $30-million for a sheriff’s office, that there will be insufficient funds for treatment, robust and effective diversion, or for re-entry into the community. Those are the very programs that make us safer. The proposed jail size, potential for expansion, distance from the courthouse, and proximity to Border Patrol are concerns. We will push for a serious look at either a smaller, less expensive jail or renovating our downtown jail.


Simply put, we believe that spending 100-percent of our public safety tax capacity for the next 30 years on a jail is not an investment in hope, but instead builds a legacy of despair. We stand ready to work with all of our elected officials on an equitable and comprehensive justice system after this ballot measure fails in November. Our goal will be an equitable, fair and less-costly solution that we can all support with pride.


The Riveters Collective Board of Directors


***Co-sign our letter below.***

Sign our letter:
Receive updates on the "No on the Jail Ballot Measure" campaign.


Roxann Kay

Sharon Shewmake

Lisa Van Doren

karen fisher

Maggie Wettergreen

Kathleen Hennessy

Stephen W. Jackson

Jennifer Gruenert

Susan Wood

Bette C Williams

Andronetta Douglass

Jenn Mason

Dena Jensen

Elizabeth Hartsoch

Eowyn Savela

Janet Hosokawa

Sandy Robson

Lisa Citron

Karlee Deatherage

Bert Monroe

Helen E. Moran

Brenda Bentley

Anna Wolff

Elma Burnham

Stephanie Allen

Wendy Courtemanche

Andrew Reding

RC 2017 Endorsement Process

Riveters Collective 2017 Endorsement Process and Information

  • Riveters Collective has Washington Nonprofit Corporation status, which allows electoral activity, including endorsements.
  • The RC Board voted to do endorsements on April 13, 2017.
  • RC Member Susan Wood volunteered to be the Endorsements Committee Chair.
  • RC recruited endorsement committee members by an open call to members through Facebook and email.
    • RC excluded anyone from the committee who had already begun working on a campaign, is a candidate for a local office, or has a leadership role in a major political party. For this reason, RC board members Lisa McShane, Stephen Jackson and Jenn Mason were excluded from the Endorsement Committee, and abstained from involvement in the process.  Board members Elizabeth Hartsoch and Eowyn Savela supported the committee’s work, but did not serve on the committee.
    • 11 people responded to the call, met the criteria, and were appointed to the Endorsements Committee.  One of the 11 committee members, Lisa Van Doren, also serves on the RC board.
    • Recognizing that the RC leadership team and endorsement committee are not sufficiently representative of the larger community–and more importantly the more marginalized and vulnerable members of the community–and recognizing that many local progressive groups are prohibited from making candidate endorsements, RC solicited feedback from groups representing diverse interests.
    • The Endorsement Committee built questionnaires off of these responses and RC’s progressive mission. The questionnaires were shared with the RC Facebook group and were amended based on the solicited feedback.
  • All candidates who filed for open positions on the Whatcom County Council, Bellingham City Council, Port of Bellingham Commission, or Bellingham Public School Board were contacted with an invitation to request the RC endorsement.  Final questionnaires were shared on the RC website and in the facebook group.
  • Candidates were sent RC endorsement questionnaires in mid-May, immediately after candidate filing week.
  • The Endorsement Committee met to develop candidate interview questions.
  • Eighteen candidates submitted materials to the endorsement committee by the May 30th deadline.
  • The Endorsement Committee interviewed candidate interviews June 5-7, 2017.  The committee declined to interview candidates in uncontested races, and declined to interview candidates whose values were fundamentally opposed to the values of the RC.  
  • All interview questions were asked in exactly the same manner to all candidates.
  • The Endorsements Committee considered questionnaire responses and interviews in making endorsement decisions. Following extensive conversation, the Endorsement Committee made their endorsement recommendations to the RC Board.
  • The RC Board formally voted to approve all endorsements as presented by the Endorsements Committee.

Recommended Actions for the Week of 20170612


Local Level Actions

National Level Actions / Other

From the Calendar

Link to the Riveters Collective Calendar

Every Monday: Attend a vigil hosted by C2C and Keep Bellingham Families Working between 11:30a.m.-1:30p.m. or 5:00p.m. in front of City Hall. Show the powers that be that you stand by our undocumented workers and anyone else running afoul of ICE. Let the officials know it’s not alright to tear families apart!

Tuesday, June 13, 2017 from 6:00-8:30p.m.: Attend the City of Bellingham Townhall regarding the housing crisis affecting cities throughout the I-5 corridor. The meeting will be held at the Bellingham High School, 2020 Cornwall Ave, Bellingham, WA 98225. The first half will consist of a panel, the second half will be an opportunity for members of the public to share their ideas and potential solutions. Click here for more information or visit Facebook.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017 from 7:00-10:00p.m.: Attend the Whatcom County Council for an emergency public hearing on the proposed mega jail. People will be gathering outside the Whatcom County District Court, 311 Grand Ave., 1st Floor, Bellingham, WA 98825 at 6:00p.m. to learn more about the issues, and then the County Council will convene at 7:00p.m. Visit Facebook for more details.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017 from 5:00-6:30p.m.: Join the ACLU People Power Postcard Party to tell our local representatives that the community wants an “independent oversight entity” to ensure the safety of undocumented residents and immigrants in Bellingham and Whatcom County. The event will be held at at Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro, 1107 Railroad Ave., Bellingham, WA 98225 and is open to all ages. A small donation is appreciated to help with printing costs. Visit Facebook for more information.

2017 Endorsed Candidates

***Riveters Collective *** 2017 Endorsed Candidates***

Bellingham City Council

Ward 4: Pinky Vargas

Ward 6: Michael Lilliquist

At-large: Roxanne Murphy 


Bellingham School Board

Position 4: Jenn Mason

                Teri Hill-McIntyre

                (Dual Endorsement)

Position 5: Douglas W. Benjamin  


Port of Bellingham

District 1: Michael Alvarez Shepard

District 2: Barry Wenger


Whatcom County Council

District 1: Rud Browne

District 2: Todd Donovan

District 3: Rebecca Boonstra

At-large: Barry Buchanan


We have a cheat sheet for you! Click on the image below to download a shareable image for social media.


Want to know a little more about these candidates and why we chose them? Click here to read their questionnaire responses, along with the responses of several other candidates whom we interviewed.

Cover photo credit: Kjersten Hayes

2017 Candidate Endorsement Questionnaires

The RC sent endorsement questionnaires to candidates on 19 May 2017.  Our endorsement committee is still hard at work, building rubrics for evaluation of responses and scheduling interviews.  You can see the questions linked below.


Candidate Information

Bellingham City Council

Whatcom County Council

Port of Bellingham

Bellingham Public Schools


Elections 2017

Candidate AMAs*

Dates will be added and linked as they are confirmed.

24 April 2017, 8:30pm – Amy Glasser, County Council District 2

8 May 2017, 8:00pm – Jean Layton, City Council

11 July 2017, 8:00pm – Rebecca Boonstra, County Council District 3

20 July 2017, 8:30pm – Michael Shepard, Port Commissioner District 1

16 October 2017, 8:00pm – Michael Lilliquist, City Council Ward 6

18 October 2017, 7:30pm – Jenn Mason, Bellingham School Board Position 4

26 October 2017, 8:30pm – Teri Hill-McIntyre, Bellingham School Board Position 4

1 November 2017, 8:30pm – Pinky Vargas, City Council Ward 4


*AMA stands for Ask Me Anything.  The candidate has agreed to take questions on the thread at the designated time.  This is an online chat.