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January 16, 2019

10/31/2018 1:40:00 PM
'Yes' on Charter faces future

One of the most salient issues regarding the county charter debate is population growth. Skagit County is nearly 100,000 people greater than 100 years ago, and we are growing by over four percent a year. That percentage can be expected to increase as well. Dealing with ever-growing population is always complicated, but ignoring the challenge is not the solution.
The No Charter mailer refers to the charter as a “big city” solution that will result in increased size, costs and complexity resulting in less responsiveness to the people. But the No Charter group mistakenly conflates size with less approachability. Their flyer asserts that larger councils have “diluted the representation for the common citizen.” In fact, it is just the opposite. With greater representation, there will be greater opportunity to have our voices heard and a fuller vetting of the issues. We could craft a district that ensures rural/ag representation.
At the League of Women voters forum on Oct. 15, many of the No Charter proponents spoke of retaining the way of life they had enjoyed for four or five generations here in Skagit County. Would we want to go back to the unpaved roads, facilities without water or power and the steam-powered equipment of 100 years ago? We enjoy our modern way of life and see it progressing faster than we had ever imagined. Don’t fear change because it’s happening whether you want it to or not.
Embrace the Freeholder/Charter process and contribute to the solution. Vote Yes for Proposition 1.
Rick Shorten
Greater La Conner







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