An anonymous donor and a local nonprofit will pay the Mount Baker School District $500,000 if Whatcom County takes control of 8,700 acres in the Lake Whatcom watershed, a move that would reduce revenue to the district. (Continue reading...)
The City of Bellingham has been pushing for this plan for a couple of years. This will effectively shut down all development and logging, and turn this enormous parcel of Department of Natural Resources land into a county park. The major questions have always been:
1. Do we actually need that much more park, along with the cost to maintain it? The land is providing revenue at the moment.
2. Is this really supposed to “fix” Lake Whatcom (dubious science from the get-go)?
3. Is there an anti-logging element? If so, that strains the County Charter.
4. How does a one-time donation to the school district (even half a million dollars), cover the long term loss of logging revenue to the district?
5. Why has the Land Trust been so involved (negotiating with the school district for the County?), and will this private organization stand to gain assets if this goes through? They do have a record of “sharing” easements and property with Parks.
WE hope there are still opportunities for these questions to be raised in public hearings.
Will there even BE public hearings? A lot of bills arrive at Council without them lately, have you noticed?