The Whatcom County Council will vote on the ninth consecutive Cherry Point fossil fuel moratorium on Tuesday, June 2. This confirms the Council’s clear intention to continue to pursue their proposed Cherry Point amendments despite the economic uncertainty created by the COVID-19 crisis. This action could put hundreds of union carpenter jobs at risk in North Puget Sound.
Whatcom Coalition provided the following points for public comment.
- The moratorium is unnecessary and should NOT be renewed. We are asking that the Whatcom County Council not renew the Cherry Point Moratorium that expires on June 3rd. This ninth iteration prolongs an unnecessary rolling moratorium and sends the wrong message to current and prospective Whatcom County employers. Employers that are responsible for the jobs and tax revenue needed to enable our economy to recover from the post pandemic recession.
- Whatcom County’s needs to support its employers. The County should be supporting employers that create family wage jobs and significant tax revenue. Instead, the County continues to take action that communicates hostility and distrust towards business – in particular, the very businesses that have been and continue to be crucial to the region’s economy. As we try to rebuild our economy after the COVID 19 crisis, the County’s continued political crusade seems out of touch with the regional concerns about the economy, joblessness and decreasing tax revenue.
- The moratorium sends the wrong message. Some have suggested the economic concerns regarding the moratorium are misplaced because it has not really blocked any specific project that the refineries want to advance at this time. While that may be true, it misses the point of our economic concerns. The very existence of the moratorium reflects the County’s hostility towards current and prospective industries at Cherry Point. Regarding current Cherry Point companies specifically, it influences company capital investment, as companies are more inclined to redirect their capital investments to other more hospitable areas in the Country. This kind of inhospitable policy making is particularly counterproductive when we need new capital project investment with the associated jobs, tax revenues, and positive influence on other sectors of the local economy.
- We are most concerned about the proposed Cherry Point amendments. The Cherry Point moratorium is ultimately about the County Council’s proposed Cherry Point amendments. We continue to have concerns about the proposed amendments especially given our current economic situation. We are however encouraged by the review and recommendations of the Planning Commission. We need to allow the Planning Commission to finish their work.
PUBLIC HEARING NOTICE (Virtual Public Hearing)
Join in: Tuesday, June 2nd 6:00pm
Email Addresses for comment
Whatcom County Executive
Whatcom County Council
firstname.lastname@example.org – General