An open letter from “Whatcom Voice” to the Whatcom County Council.

Dear Whatcom County Council Member,

As you probably already know a conflict of interest is a situation in which an individual has competing interests or loyalties…with a public official whose personal interests conflict with his/her professional position. The circumstance of a public officeholder, business executive, or the like, whose personal interests might benefit from his or her official actions or influence.

An apparent conflict of interest is one in which a reasonable person would think that the professional s judgment is likely to be compromised. A potential conflict of interest involves a situation that may develop into an actual conflict of interest.

Timothy Ballew II is the leading candidate (5 votes out of 6) to be appointed by the Whatcom Council to fill the vacant at-large Council position.  He was the former Lummi Business Council Chair for the past five years. I understand he is a proud member (and rightly so) of the Lummi Nation.

Many of the Whatcom County Council actions involves the competing interest with the Lummi Nation.  Potential water policy, law enforcement, county jail, taxation, Cherry Point and other land use policy to name a few.

Question- for the five Council members making the appointment to the County Council At-Large position, that represents all the citizens of Whatcom County, if appointed will Mr. Ballew II be willing to recuse himself from voting or participating in Council matters when there is a clear conflict or even an appearance of a conflict of interest involving competing interest with the Lummi Nation?

Question- has nominee Timothy Ballew II been advised, by the Council’s attorney, of the

Tim Ballew II

potential for, and under what circumstances, that he, if appointed,  may need to recuse himself from issues involving the Lummi Nation?

Would it not be prudent for the Council to know the answers to these questions for all seven of the potential nominees before they vote to appoint the new at-large council member Tuesday night January 16, 2018.

Just asking the question, as a past member of the City of Bellingham Council, who had to address the same potential conflicts of interest polices as a professional business owner, professional land surveyor and land use consultant.

Bruce Ayers, WhatcomVoice

Here’s more information on the nominee’s

The eight chosen to move forward are:

1) Timothy Ballew Former Lummi Business Council Chair (5 votes)

Timothy Ballew WILL run in November for the seat… He has clearly made his priority tribal interest over the years.

2) Natalie McClendon Ran in 42nd District Leg as Democrat (5 votes)

3). Seth Fleetwood Ran for 42nd District Leg as Democrat (5 Votes)

4.) Patricia Dunn Transportation Consultant (2 Votes)

Click on the person above for more information on them or  For a closer look at each candidate you can find their applications here.