Wes Cormier – Grays Harbor County Commissioner District No. 1

Housing for the homeless, and the “homeless fund” at the County. Wes also talks about the benefits of a diverse board of commissioners.

Each Commissioner is bringing their own budget to the table on April 20th.

Wes Cormier – Grays Harbor County Commissioner

Wes Cormier talks about the shortest meeting in recent memory, budgets, and county revenues are on the rise. “Levy Shift I vote NO”

Part 1

Part 2

The county’s lawsuit over property program. “We’ll see how this goes, [but] I really feel like we’re on the right side of this.”

Grays Harbor County Commissioners choose not to submit stance on crude by rail

The County Commissioners yesterday decided not to weigh in on the current scoping of two projects that seek to export crude oil through Grays Harbor.
Cosmopolis Mayor Vickie Raines advised the commissioners against adopting a resolution “I think at this particular time we don’t have all the information that is necessary to be making a judgment call and passing a resolution on something that is more interstate.”
The proposed resolution also called on updates to the county’s incident response plans, Commissioner Wes Cormier said it was just too specific. “I went through this and you know one of the points says that railroad company restriction of petroleum transport through Grays Harbor County and then section 2 weighs in heavily on phasing out older model tank cars. I don’t know much about this type of thing. Like I said I wouldn’t mind sending a more general letter, in support of safety, given that we have had 3 derailments.
Commissioner Frank Gordon said he’d like to call for a moratorium on the trains, but said the best they could do was urge the state and federal authorities to tighten restrictions.
The next commissioners meeting will be after the deadline for public comment on the scoping phase of two projects proposed to export crude oil from Hoquiam terminals.

County Commissioners shape proposed Public Hospital District #2, heads for August ballot

The Grays Harbor County Commissioners have accepted the proposed Public Hospital District’s boundaries, as it was presented by petition. With a “nay” vote from Commissioner Wes Cormier who had proposed an Aberdeen-Hoquiam-Cosmopolis district, the commissioners accepted Herb Welch’s motion to accept the originally proposed boundaries. They then adopted a resolution to put the issue on an August 5th ballot. Split 5 ways, the proposed taxing authority would have 7 elected commissioners total, two at-large.

Commissioner Frank Gordon added signup dates are the 14th through the 16th of May “so let’s get hustling and find some people.”

The county is looking for 7 candidates for the inaugural board, if the district is approved by the voters.

Grays Harbor County Commissioners hosting public hearings on Public Hospital District

Grays Harbor County Commissioners are holding public hearings this week on the formation of a public Hospital District. Two hearings today start at 2pm and 5:30pm in the Large Commissioner Meeting room in Montesano followed by two more at 9am and 5:30pm on May 7th, also in the meeting room.
Commissioner Wes Cormier reminds voters that “the creation of a public hospital district may only be initiated by the public through the petition process, and did not arise from the county or County Commissioners.”
The question is likely heading to the August ballot.

Grays Harbor Transit denies bus ads against crude-by-rail

Grays Harbor Transit will not weigh in on the crude by rail debate. Citing their current policy on political ads, the Transit Authority Board last night declined to authorize a request  made by Aberdeen resident Tori Kovach to advertise on their buses.
Grays Harbor Transit denies Crude by Rail adsAs a member of the Grays Harbor Coalition for Infrastructure, Transit Board member Frank Gordon recused himself citing a conflict of interest. The County Commissioner then offered this opinion “We are so poor, we’re poorer than church mice and church mice can’t turn down the cheese. So we have a chance to make some money on the ads on this bus – just a thought.”
With two other absences on the board last night Westport Mayor Michael Bruce, County Commissioner Wes Cormier, and Aberdeen Mayor Bill Simpson did not have a quorum to authorize the ads. Gordon said to me during the meeting “so you can put down there was a bunch of old fogies on the transit board, [that] did nothing.
The four ads requested are editorial cartoons drawn by the Minneapolis Star Tribune’s Steve Sack, all spoke out against crude by rail.

Grays Harbor County adopts levy shift again this year

MONTESANO, Wash. – The Grays Harbor County Commissioners yesterday adopted their regular Property Tax Levy for 2014. They also adopted a levy shift that moves $500,000 from their road fund to their general fund. Commissioner Wes Cormier voted “no” on both.
Terry Franklin lives down an East county road, she said during the public comment period “You got to figure out what to do, and quit using our road money because I haven’t had lines on my road for three years. One of these days one of us is going to end up in the ditch because there’s not even a fog line, there’s not a center line, there’s nothing there anymore.
Commissioner Frank Gordon said at least they’ll be able to call 911 “We’ll I’m going to tell you the most important thing “quality of life” for me, because I lived in the country most of my life, is if I call 911 I know I’m going to have a Sheriff’s Deputy there. Well you know something, sometimes we have to take choices between one’s safety, or a line down the road.
For the third consecutive year the commissioners approved the shift, the first two years they shifted $750,000, they are authorized to shift up to a million of they need to shift their taxing authority to prop up their budget. County staff suggested they “ween” themselves off of the option, over the next few years.
The Commissioners yesterday also postponed a vote to adopt their 2014 budget until Monday the 9th.

Grays Harbor’s reluctant Prosecutor-appointee worries Superior Court Judge

 “What do you do over there if we have a major felony case -even a minor felony case, but what about a horrible tragedy situation, and the person is convicted, and goes up and raises the issue that constitutionally that prosecuting attorney is not authorized by law to prosecute me?
At the special meeting yesterday Samuel asked the commissioners why they chose her over Deputy Prosecutor Katie Svoboda, both were on a list of three provided by the democratic party after former prosecutor Stew Menefee retired in September.
Two commissioners replied that they felt she would do a good job, commissioner Wes Cormier said “I thought that the process that was conducted at the PCO meeting was just a slap in the face. If you put yourself on the list, then you’re subject to being picked.