Sunday, April 27, 2014

Mark Your Calendars

Here are two things to put on your calendar for next week in Port Angeles.

Item #1: This coming City Council meeting should be an interesting one. The Council is meeting in Executive Session at 4:30PM on Tuesday to "discuss a settlement agreement regarding an employee." Per the minimal language used in the packet for this meeting, City staff anticipates "potential action to follow regarding the consideration of a settlement agreement regarding an employee claim. / Potential approval."

The next sound you hear will be the City admitting
no wrongdoing whatsoever, but...

Sounds to me like staff is confident that the Council will settle with this "employee." And the fact that the language used is more present tense, I would suspect this is regarding Toxic Teresa Pierce. Of course, it could be Yvonne Ziomkowski - or even both. In any case, if the Council is going to take action on this, you'll want to be there when they come out of Executive Session. I'd suggest getting to City Hall no later than 4:45PM, just in case. (I'm sorry that I'll have to miss this one - I'll be out of town on a job interview.)

Also on the agenda Tuesday evening, is a Council work session on the long-range financial plan - such as it is. You'd probably find that interesting, too. They're set to discuss that, naturally, but not the item that precedes it on the agenda, which is a whole slew of grant applications that staff have put together on the consent agenda.

The memo from Nathan West for these grant applications assures the Council that "staff continues to explore a variety of available funding opportunities," which sounds pretty good. Who doesn't want opportunities?

Here are the grants the City is putting in for:
ALEA Grant $500,000 (50% match)
BIG Grant $1.4 million (25% match)
BFP Grant $1 million (25% match)
LWCF Grant $500,000 (50% match)
WWRP-Local Parks Grant $200,000 (50% match)

The first four have to do with the WTIP project (and a couple of floats for docks), while the last item is the previously discussed grant for Civic Field's lighting. Given that it was previously floated as a $400,000 grant, with a $200,000 match, it's unclear if the staff memo contains a typo, or if the City has cut their numbers in half, due to the School Board's lack of interest in putting up the whole $140,000 the City requested.

But either way, these "grants" provide some pretty striking numbers - in terms of the matches required. As presented, these "funding opportunities" will cost the City over a million dollars in matches. Now, staff will doubtlessly, with some degree of accuracy, pitch this amount as being one they can partially reach through previous or existing spending - but that only gets you so far, really. Now, I don't know about you, but, from where I sit, I get nervous whenever the City Council commits themselves to more spending, and/or taking on more debt, especially for projects that aren't truly necessary - like the WTIP, which accounts for the bulk of the grants and matches presented here.

Port Angeles: Putting the EBT in DEBT.

So Tuesday evening's meeting should be interesting whether you're interested in the soap opera that is our City government (the employee settlement) or the tragedy that is our City government's finances (the employee settlement and the grant applications and the long-term budget presentation).

Item #2 to put on your calendar follows on Wednesday, when Judge Rick Porter will be a guest on KONP specifically to discuss his pay-or-appear program. In terms of the City budget, Rick Porter's tough guy, pay-or-appear stance has caused legal costs for the City to skyrocket in the past several years. It's not at all unrealistic to say that Porter himself has also cost the City over a million dollars in legal fees over the past several years, all for the ultimate result of...What exactly? He hasn't driven the crime rate down, he hasn't solved any problems - but he's sure been a hard-ass, far-right jerk of a judge. Be ready to call in and put Porter on the spot, and challenge him on what actual, tangible results our community has to show for his actions - other than an inflated legal bill for the City, and an increased financial burden for citizens.

Rick Porter looks forward to talking with you
this Wednesday. No, really.


  1. It will doubtlessly be interesting to see just how nervous the Council members are on Tuesday, and how little they say about the settlement. Expect a lot of grim faces, though.

    As for the million dollar grant question...It would be nice if there was some discussion of this, but there probably won't be. It would also be nice if there was a public comment period that night, but since it's a work session, there won't be. I can't help but feel this is intentional. Don't want any pesky members of the public bumming the grant high staff will try to create for the Council. "Free money! Free money! "

  2. Grants aren't an inherently bad thing at all. When acquired and used properly, they can be a great boost to a municipality.

    But staff here too often follow the "grant first, project and budget later" trap. They go far grants just to go for grants. How it fits (or doesn't) into the overall budget and plan for the city is a secondary consideration, if it's considered at all.

    A huge part of what enables this is the utter lack of a plan or roadmap from the City Council about where the city is going, what the city is doing (long-term) and how we're going to get there (short to mid-term). The City Council is like a weekly TV show that has no continuity from week to week. Each episode is a new adventure, entered into with no memory of what has gone before, or thought to what is likely to come next. This enables both the machinations of staff, and the happy happy spend spend mentality that pervades City Hall.

  3. Whatever Yvonne (eventually) gets, it won't be enough.

    Whatever Teresa Pierce gets, even if a penny, will be more than she deserves.

  4. Rick Porter is, and no doubt will continue to be, an embarrassment and burden for the people of Clallam County. The same people who, inexplicably, keep re-electing him. While I'm all for calling and putting him on the spot Wednesday, I don't expect that or anything else will cause him to stray from the path he believes God has laid out for him. He's a creepy, creepy zealot.

    1. I keep hearing rumblings that Porter has not one, not two but three or more DUI citations from surrounding counties. He does walk to work so maybe he has "issues" on his driver's license. Anyone got the skinny on this?

    2. I've heard this rumor before, and there doesn't seem to be anything to it. It seems like a smear that Porter's enemies have floated to try and damage his reputation. That's something he can do on his own, in my opinion.

      But may I suggest that readers here add a regular trip to the online Clallam County Jail Roster to their media diet? It's a real window into our community at times.

      I don't believe there's any proof of Porter having a DUI, but right now the daughter (Bonnie Jean Pittis) of our late public works director and city council member Jack Pittis is in jail for...DUI. She is the sister of Amber (Pittis) Mozingo, who recently got off scott-free after stealing $40,000 worth of services while she worked at the city. Any bets on any penalty that Bonnie Jean will face?

      This is a very dark and devious little city.

    3. I've tried to chase down the Porter DUI thing too, and the only "connections" I come across are between Porter (as a judge) trying DUI cases (in his courtroom). If others can offer proof, fine - I'd be very interested in that. But for now, I'd personally file this under "dubious rumors."

      But it really IS always interesting to see who turns up in jail, and what for. Sometimes it does help illustrate who is connected in this town (it never hits the paper) and who isn't.

    4. Wouldn't a simple visit to Washington Courts solve this issue? Just plug in his name and see what comes up.

    5. you can look up Rick Porter and see the Clallam case where all the judges recused themselves. There also seem to be a divorce, a child custody hearing, and a bunch of other things. These cases are all public record...with the case number we should be able to go look them up.

    6. If you look up Bonnie J. Pittis, you'll see that her problems with the justice system go back a long way. ( Both of the Pittis girls can't really be described as the brightest bulbs in the can they?

  5. While I've been willing to give Dale Wilson the benefit of the doubt when it comes to his efforts via Port O Call, I have to say that if he's foolish enough to be trying to recruit Peter Ripley to be on his new "Brave New City Committee" (or whatever it's called), then I'm afraid I'm going to have to write him off as being nearly as clueless as Peter so obviously is. To be blunt, Peter Ripley is an idiot. He shouldn't be advising anybody about anything anywhere.

    1. While I agree with your assessment of Peter Ripley, and that it's a bad idea to ask him to be involved with essentially anything, I will just say again...If you have any comments on Port O Call, their website allows you to comment there. That would seem the sensible place to direct your comments, concerns, etc. It's certainly more direct, if nothing else.

    2. Dunno where you got your info but suggest you check its accuracy before weighing in on it. I have not recruited anyone in particular for BNCC. Unless you consider inviting EVERYONE to get involved in taking back our city governance from the greed heads and idiots.
      I'm sorry you have such a dim view of Peter. If nothing else be said about him he certainly is out front in his desire to bring accountability to the silly council.

    3. Okay, everyone...Once again...It's once per customer, but after that, please direct any comments to Dale to the Port O Call website. The best forum for discussing Port O Call is on their website.

  6. Dear Mr Kicker
    Your money management logic fails this time.
    As a single mom, I struggle to makes all ends meet and keep my children properly fed.
    If I can take advantage of multiple coupon savings and can buy $100 worth of a variety of groceries for $75, I consider that good money management and am not ashamed of using the coupons.
    So, how is a variety of civic improvement projects that have been (democratically identified) and selected by our (democratically elected) public officials, which total $4.8 million - but which would cost local tax payers like me only $1.2 million not good money management too?
    Do us a favor, buy a calculator or use one on you computer.

    1. Dear Mom,

      First of all, I too clip and use coupons. Whenever I find a coupon for a PRODUCT THAT I NEED I am happy. You bet. No argument there.

      Now, in response to your attempted points...While I understand that the members of the City Council have been democratically elected, I don't really know what you mean when you describe these projects as having been "democratically identified." We didn't get to vote on them, other than the recent vote on Civic Field, a vote that resulted in a strong NO. I'd call that process one of "democratic identification" - only the City Council is refusing to recognize that. Right?

      So, in responding to the (somewhat muddled) point I think you're trying to make...Yes, as a poster has pointed out, grants can absolutely be a help and a boon to a municipality. When...used...properly.

      What I question is whether these projects, and these grants, and the matching funds REQUIRED to obtain these grants, is the best course to follow right now. Do you have any idea of how much existing debt the City is carrying? Do you understand just how behind the City is in maintaining basic infrastructure? We're not talking lights for a ball field - which is nice, but not necessary - we're talking roads and sewers and power lines. Things every one of us depend on every day. So why would you choose to spend scarce funds on projects that aren't priorities?

      In short, this boils down to questions about plans and priorities. As I said earlier, coupons/grants are great, when they're available for PRODUCTS/PROJECTS YOU NEED. I would argue that the City too frequently chases grant dollars in general, and doesn't do so as part of a coordinated, thought-out plan.

      To use your analogy...If you're on a tight budget (and who isn't?), and going to the store to do your grocery shopping, it isn't a "deal" if you find a bunch of coupons to buy, say, candy, which then eats into your budget for buying the necessities of life (bread, vegetables, etc.). You end up with a lot of fun but hardly necessary candy, and not enough nutritious food to eat. (And you'll have dental problems down the line, too...) This is what the City is like with our tax dollars: A kid in a candy store. It isn't healthy, and it's not sustainable.

      Hopefully, Mom, this makes my position, and my criticism, a little clearer for you.

      Speaking of clarity...You have a typo in the last line of your message.

      With love,


    2. Well stated, CK.

      Here is the short version:

      A "deal" is only a deal, if you can afford it.

    3. When you walk into JC Penny's and see that an item of clothing is 50% off, do you just buy it, even though you don't really NEED IT? "Oh gosh look at how much it cost before" (never mind that the wholesale value is 1/10th of what the original manufacturers' recommended sales price is).

      It's all trickery. It's a psychological game to make us THINK we are benefiting.

      The problem is we are all brainwashed into thinking that we SAVED something...the little highlighted text at the bottom of the receipt says "YOU SAVED $$$" The clerk points it out (as they have been trained to do). You walk out feeling like a hunter who just stalked and killed some big game.

      Only, you just SPENT money. You just spent money on something that you, probably, really didn't "NEED" in the first place. Oh you will try and rationalize it. That is what this is all about. It's about making us feel good about our purchases while tossing away our hard earned money, instead of SAVING IT up, for a future purchase, of something we might really NEED.

      That isn't saving, its spending. SPENDING.

      The grants are more like buying a new sweater, in the late SPRING, that you don't need (because it will be warm for the next 4-5 months). It is not at all like using a coupon for something you DO NEED.

      Although, studies have shown that the psychological boost from saving a little bit of money on an item we need, loosen our grip on reality, and we end up spending several times more on things we didn't intend on buying.

      It's a little like "oh look, I saved $1.00 on these cans of soup, so I deserve to buy $3.00 worth of candy. I can afford to treat myself." The studies are clear that what marketers call LOSS LEADERS increase spending of shoppers. We are impulse driven, and the big chain stores know this. You know the stupid Rewards Cards? They're to further refine ways to sucker us. It's all research.

      We didn't NEED the waterfront improvement, we got a grant for it. We didn't NEED the Gateway, we got a grant to do it. We didn't NEED the multitudes of cameras along the waterfront, we got a GRANT. See the thinking? It's flawed.

      It's crazy thinking.

      So, we are spending $$$ to build things that (before the grant) we didn't even know we needed?

      This is insanity.

      It's not FREE MONEY, it's a suckers game.

  7. It's really interesting how staff (consciously or not) phrases things in their memos. Not "action possible," or something a little more generic and wide-ranging. No, they say "Potential approval." Which sounds a lot to me like anticipated approval, as in, the Council is onboard and we just have to go through the motions and try to get this behind as quickly as we can.

    Yes, it should be a very interesting - and expensive - night in the Council Chambers Tuesday.

  8. As for Rick Porter...Despite the money spent on legal costs by the city, I certainly don't feel any safer due to his hardline, hanging judge behavior. If anything, we're made LESS safe, because the money spent to cover Porter's shenanigans could instead go to prosecuting more cases, hiring more attorneys, addressing substance abuse issues, etc. Rick Porter costs us a dollar for every penny of safety and quality of life he provides. That's no bargain - except in Port Angeles.

    1. Though I would disagree with Porter's actions on principle no matter what (abusing poor people is never very pretty), he could at least somewhat reframe the argument for his position if it had resulted in a dramatic drop in crime, or recidivism, or something. But it hasn't.

      Instead, he's caused a continuing spike in expenses for local cities, which only exacerbates the budget problems they are facing already. A waste of resources is a waste of resources, no matter what is causing it. Rick Porter is wasting our local resources (tax dollars) in the extreme.

    2. Once again, people get half of the available information and then make all kinds of completely wrong statements based upon their assumptions. Judge Porter's Pay or Appear program has not caused a "...continuing spike in expenses for local cities, which only exacerbates the budget problems they are facing already." The additional revenue his program has given to the cities, each year, is much larger than the increases in expenditurers that has been caused by the few extra days in jail given to those people who fail to pay what they promised AND THEN fail to appear and explain why they didn't pay. So, yes, when somebody agrees to pay $25.00 per month against their speeding ticket, and doesn't make their payment, instead of being turned over to an out of town collection agency, as the previous judge did (with less than a 20% collection rate), the scofflaw is summoned back to court to explain why he did not make his payment. If he ALSO doesn't appear in court , THEN a warrant is issued for his arrest. This practice has resulted in a more than 85% collection rate (which goes to the cities who ticked the speeded in the first place). It does not abuse poor people, it allows them a chance to make payments on their ticket that they agree to in court, gives them a chance to come back to court and explain why they can't make this month's payment, and only sends them to jail if they are in contempt of court by not doing either. "If you can't pay the fine, don't do the crime."

    3. Okay...I'm going to give you the benefit of an intelligent reply, even though your use of language like "ticked the speeded" raises some concerns about your reading comprehension.

      Right. Let's say someone gets a ticket, or whatever. Then they get fined. let's say, $250 dollars. Then let's say they miss a court date, so a warrant is issued. They get arrested and spend a few days in jail before they can appear before a judge.

      Do you understand that it costs the City of Port Angeles something in the neighborhood of $75 dollars A DAY when a Port Angeles resident is in jail? And do you understand that, if that person is poor, the City of Port Angeles is required to provide legal representation for them? And do you understand that that costs money as well? Staff time, processing paperwork, serving warrants, etc. - those things aren't free.

      So one person spending one weekend in jail can pretty easily cost the City over $3-400. Which, in case you're not tracking, is less than the initial $25 fine. And by the way, fines like that don't all go to the City anyway. Did you know that?

      In short, here's how it works: If Rick Porter "fines" a penniless defendant $500, Porter gets to count that as "income," even if he never collects a penny of it. Meanwhile, if that person has spent even one day in jail, the City HAS to pay for it, no matter what.

      Look at how many people are generally in our jail. Do the math. You'll see how quickly these charges (just for holding them, mind you) add up. Then add police costs, court costs, etc., etc. This is how Rick Porter's pauper's court costs the City of Port Angeles tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars a year.

      And by the way, that phrase I used, "pauper's court," isn't mine. I'm stealing it from our police chief, Terry Gallagher, who has used it to describe how Porter runs his courtroom. Terry is hardly a flaming liberal. But he sees just how harmful Porter's insanely punitive behavior is, financially and otherwise.

      Speaking of which...Your lame use of the old "If you can't pay the fine, don't do the crime" line is pathetic. The truth is, in many cases here in Clallam County, the people being fined CAN'T pay the fine. They are broke. Flat. Busted. No job, no bank account. Nothing. So how are they going to pay these fines? Is it realistic to fine them? I would argue that it is not.

      But it sure makes Rick Porter look "tough on crime," doesn't it?

    4. If you GET a ticket (speeding, for not having your insurance card in the car, for an expired plate tab) you can't just get out of it by telling it to the judge. Doesn't work that way. You pay, then you get an opportunity to tell it to the judge, and then if he decides to lower the amount, you still are on the hook for an ADMINISTRATION FEE. It's all an extortion scheme to suck money out of people. And, given that the State Troopers can write a ticket for 3 miles over the speed limit, it's their word against yours, and even if you beat the ticket, you still have to pay.
      So, who does this hurt? People who have a couple a hundred left over after payday, or the people who are scraping by to barely make ends meet?
      The problem is the system now works as a taxing system. It's not about keeping the streets safe from bad drivers. It's about mining for money.
      I was stopped 3 times one night, because I had a headlight go out during a drive (between here and Port Townsend). The reason? Because "why not?". One of the officers even asked if he could LOOK IN MY TRUNK. WTF? (he had no reason do to so, and I didn't give permission). Must have been a slow night. If I had lacked an insurance card, of if my registration was also expired, I would have had a fine ($250 for the insurance, $100 for the lack of registration).
      This area is POOR.

    5. At the same time of the Porter window dressing we have had a major increase in crime because property crimes are given a low priority, and usually it's "catch and release". Arrest and let them go for "time served". We have meth heads who roam the area openly, and steal whatever they can get their hands on. Meanwhile, you have honest citizens betting squeezed in every which way (utility rates, taxes, fines, and food costs). We have a large number of under employed, unemployed, and terminally without jobs. We have an even larger number of people getting welfare/food stamps/WIC, all of which have been cut. We have people on disability who simply cannot make ends meet. All these things contribute to PROPERTY CRIMES. After all if someone cannot feed their kids, what do you think they'll do? Food bank out of food? Kids crying, of course, they'll steal to feed them.
      Lets all raise our hands "who has had some property crime in the last year?" I'll bet that nearly everyone reading this blog has had some loss. Crime isn't down. And putting more pressure on those unable to pay, will just drive it up, more.
      Poor people aren't "those people". They are US.

    6. Anonymous 12:28 PM: Extremely thoughtful and well put posting. Thank you.

  9. You forget to mention that PA United is also meeting this Tuesday, where they will announce the results of their three private meetings with attorney Patrick Irwin. Supposedly, the three groups ( Downtown Assc., Chamber and PABA ) have agreed to work together . . . after the City announced that funds are limited and measurable results are mandatory moving forward. But so what if they decide to work together? Just look at these groups and the leadership. Nothing of substance will result from this whole exercise if the same people are involved. Is there no one at the City who sees or understands this? Apparently not. How much more time and money is going to be wasted? Once again, this is a City issue. We have elected Council Members and hired staff who either cannot or will not lead. The meeting is on Tuesday and I believe they have been meeting at the Senior Center at 3:30. I can verify once I know. According to the Vegas odds makers . . . the Downtown Association is the organization who is least likely to produce something of value and therefore, the most likely to lose funding - provided the City follows through on their pledge - but I wouldn't place that bet.

    1. There will be more coming here on the PA Untied meeting...

    2. Last I saw, the PAU group wants to double the population in the next 5 years! Really.

      You gotta wonder what those folks are smoking!

    3. They aren't smoking anything. They're just throwing up a smoke screen to cover the same old backroom deals and stealing they've always done - just now with a new name and fantastical stated "goals" to fool the rubes.

    4. perhaps they SHOULD start smoking something, get the munchies, and mellow out, and then they'd stop their incessant scheming.

  10. CK...a job interview OUT OF TOWN? Say it ain't so, man. Say it ain't so. You are trying to leave us? **big audible sigh***

    1. Well...It's like this.

      This blog was born out of frustration with how incredibly backward and crooked Port Angeles is. A couple of us (which is to say, a couple) and a friend were talking - AGAIN - about that, and about how it seems like the only sensible thing to do was move away. While we all agreed that was a sensible perspective to have, we all hated the thought of "the bastards" winning by driving good people, smart people and progressive people out.

      And so, being that collectively we are positioned to hear and see lots of things that go on here, we decided that, before we gave up the ghost completely, we'd try to shake loose some progress first. If that didn't work, we'd leave. So we started this blog - the response to which has been bigger than we thought possible, at least so quickly.

      But, leaving is still an option two of us are considering. We've sold a house with an underwater mortgage, and are renting now. We're also very open to enticing jobs appearing elsewhere.

      So we're still in a kind of limbo, but still kicking against the crypt doors for as long as we can. Because, at the end of the day, we're still extremely motivated to not let the bastards win. We're still very interested in seeing the bastards and the crooks exposed for what they are. Justice isn't an abstract idea; it's a moral imperative. And truth is the sword of us all.

    2. It's a great town for driving people out. The good people often leave. Good government watchdogs like Shirley Nixon. Good politicians like Max Mania. (Even bad politicians like Larry Williams, too.) Gay people leave in droves - anami, and many others. Young people.

      Can't say that I blame them, but it's still always a shame.

    3. It was disappointing when Betsy Wharton got co-opted, sold out, whatever you want to call it. Obviously she wasn't much of a fighter or champion for the causes she said she believed in. So when she lost her re-election, well, it wasn't much of a loss, really. She voted with the majority 95% of the time anyway.

      But Max Mania was a real fighter, a real champion, and if nothing else made some noise and made some people think. So it was very disheartening to see him and Dale driven out of town by the rotten good old boys. That was a loss for Port Angeles.

      This blog has been a real resource, CK, and you seem to be holding true to your causes as well. Your audience may not be as big as some (or as some of us would like), but your efforts have been appreciated. If we lose you, well, that would be a loss for Port Angeles as well. In any case, thanks again, and best of luck.

    4. Betsy suffered from "I want them to LIKE ME" and she was also told that if she played nice, maybe there would be bigger and better things ahead for her politically. She was a rube.
      I don't see that Max was driven out as much as he didn't have the maturity to have developed a tough enough skin. What exactly did anyone do to "drive him out"? He quit, in my book. He quit, pure and simple.
      So, how do we start building on this resource? Can we actually come out of the shadows, form a secret club, and start seeing each other at the various meetings (perhaps we should come up with an innocuous "tell" -- secret handshake, code words, or wear a certain color)? The problem with this town, is everyone is so damn reticent to come out of the shadows and actually connect, and become a force. Unless we actually UNITE to start working as a group, nothing will happen, we will have no political clout. Pitchforks and torches only work if it's more than two

    5. The smart ones of us just got tired of fighting, and got out, like Max did. I love watching Port Angeles spin its wheels, now that I'm watching from a distance, and not from inside. I love living in a place with jobs and trees and educated people, and that is completely free of Karen Rogers, Nippon, Barb Frederick, the PABA, Kaj Ahlburg, Dick Pilling, Cherie Kidd and all the rest. And my utility rates are cheaper, too! Life is good, now that I'm out of Port Angeles. I continue to encourage my friends, and the readers of this blog, to get out, too. Nothing will change there. You know that in your hearts. So why knock yourselves out for nothing?

    6. Max had a plenty tough skin. What he didn't have was an endless appetite for the bullshit that kept getting thrown at him. The PDN constantly running false stories about him - like when they said he proposed spending $100 million dollars on the old dump, which he didn't say. The PDN running stories that weren't news at all - like when they ran the article announcing that Max and Dale were out of the country. (Also known as an invitation to burglarize their house.) Totally baseless smears from twisted Democrats like Jack Slowriver and Matthew Randazzo. Creepy self-righteous surveillance from Brooke Nelson. The racist good ol' boys at the County harassing his wife, Dale. Having a fake liberal set up to run against you for re-election. All that and more for the "pleasure" of being the only one who made any sense, yet being marginalized by the peabrained likes of Cherie Kidd.

      Getting out of that isn't quitting - it's self-preservation. Why stay and be a punching bag? It's not like Max inspired a whole lot of people to run for office and join him in the good fight. No, instead, the forces of darkness used him as an example of what happens to those who dare cross them.

      And it worked! That's how we end up with three uncontested races last time, and one fake liberal shoe-in.

      Like you say, Anonymous 12:13 PM, "everyone is so damn reticent to come out of the shadows and actually connect." That's absolutely right. And that's why people like Betsy Wharton turn rotten - because we weren't there to keep her on the path of righteousness. That's why people like Max Mania get battered and driven out - because they speak up for us, and we sit by the sidelines instead of storming the Council Chambers. None of us (myself included, obviously) ran for City Council last time. Our elected leaders can't deliver if we don't also. And as you say, that's a tough thing to get to happen in Port Angeles.

    7. If we the people aren't willing to step up, how do we expect our individual elected representatives to step up? If we elect them to these positions of authority, but don't back them up when they're doing good, they just end up looking foolish.

      They can say "I'm here representing the people" all they want, but when the rest of the City Council looks out and sees that empty Council chamber...

  11. Single mom, fyi...I saved 70% on my groceries by switching to buying bulk, local, and not shopping at the rip-off big stores. Nothing pre-packaged, nothing pre-made. Yeah, I cook everything from "scratch" I haven't stepped in a big grocery store in years. And, I haven't used a coupon in 20 years, now. Screw the game. You can find way better food, for much cheaper, by changing the thinking.

  12. These grants are like a drug to weak-willed cities. They hear the siren song of "free" money, and lo and behold! They find projects to fit the grant, whether or not they fit their city...

  13. Now the City is saying that the settlement discussion does NOT involve either Yvonne Ziomkowski or Teresa Pierce. So it's yet another person...What goes on there in City Hall?