hydrangea blossoming

hydrangea blossoming
Hydrangea on the Edge of Blooming

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


So, last night the suits came up from Bellingham to entertain us in dialogue as to what Point Roberts needs from them (but not so much what they need from Point Roberts).  About thirty locals showed up for the experience, most of which was spent on the issues surrounding the missing dock at Lighthouse Park.  That is, how the dock could be made to reappear.  That was not so much dialogue as it was informational, but for those who missed the information, there were some dialogue attempts.  One fellow was puzzled as to why everybody kept talking about a dock at Lighthouse Park when as far as he was concerned there was no dock to speak of there.  In trying to straighten him out on this point, he drifted even farther away when one of the suits appeared to say that there had been no maintenance on this sorry excuse for a dock for the past fifteen years.  Right to the end, I think, the fellow never got much clarification as to the problem and the solution.

The problem is that the dock was removed three years ago because it was beyond repair, and the solution is that the County will put up some money, and the County and Chairperson Reber will try to get the Port of Bellingham to put up some money, and then they all three entities, assuming we can consider Reber an entity in this sentence rather than a person, will try to get the State of Washington, via some relevant agency to give some money, and voila (with the missing accent added), a new dock will come into existence.  And individuals are encouraged to write letters of support to everyone and to donate any money toward the project that they can find it in their hearts to donate.

The second hour was spent more on the dialogue part.  A woman from the Voters' Association, or maybe the Taxpayers, Association (I wish they would unite just so that we can stop having to keep them straight), spoke of the many reasons why it would be a feature and not a bug to have a foot passenger ferry between here and Blaine.  She was heavily infused with the "If you build it, they will come" vision of how things work.  Unfortunately, that vision probably involves a capital commitment that would guarantee losing money for at least the first five years, and probably forever.  The dialogue part was the suits saying, in various ways, "You go for it, Ma'am, but I wouldn't be looking for County dollars in these trying times of no County dollars."  Reber was pleased that no one outright laughed at the proposal.  The Taxpayers/Voters, whichever it is, will do more research on this issue.

And there was a little information about a small advance on getting a lighthouse for Lighthouse Park.  And there was considerable discouragement about a Bond Issue for Point Roberts which would raise large funds and would then be paid back by the income stream from the gas tax.  (Better to lease those funds, I say.  Abu Dhabi might still be interested, but Chicago, it appears, is now suffering from having people rip up the Abu Dhabi-leased parking meters.  The equivalent here, I suppose, would be angry constituents ripping up the gas pumps.  Not that!!)

And then we closed on the perennial whimper about Pt. Roberts becoming its own little municipality with its own little City Hall and its own little taxing authority.  The suits looked very dimly on this, largely based on the interesting information that municipalities' funding base is almost exclusively business fees.  They used to get money from the state, but no longer.  So, looking at the business base in Point Roberts, their advice was, "Not Enough Business..not now, maybe not ever."

And then we all went home suitably entertained.  Oh, also, the current gas tax revenues will go to some walking path shoulders on Benson and somewhere else, as I vaguely recall, to be worked on in the spring at the same time that Tyee is re-asphalted.