TO Snohomish County Public Utility District Commissioner Kathy Vaughn:
Dear Ms. Vaughn,
I have read with interest the article in the Herald, regarding your 24 year service at PUD. I also have read that you will not state if you are for or against the Sunset Falls Dam project until the studies are done. I am for term limits in all positions of service to the community.
I do not believe that with the length of service you have respectfully performed, that you will be able to make an independent decision, based on the merits of the study as it is clear that you have approved the money for a re-study of a flawed project.
When reading the information, websites and FAQ’s that PUD and others have published for all (including you) to consider, it is obvious that this is a re-study of outdated technology, with a new twist – a weir vs a solid dam. Either way, it will destroy (not improve) a section of the Skykomish River, and as you know the Skykomish is a rare valuable resource for wildlife and recreation for humans in our county that should not be industrialized in anyway. Any decision to spend money to study outdated technology once again, is a total waste of precious energy dollars paid by ratepayers. Your inability to state a position is evidence that you are no longer independent, and that you are working for bond ratings, continued tenure, vs energy issues for the people of the community. Long term public service inevitably leads to blindly approving re-studies based on testimony by contactors and those who wish to keep their jobs. Keeping a neutral postion, pushing the “study” as a reason for your inability to provide a “professional opinion” provides voters with a lack of options when choosing commissioners.
While I commend the intent to rebuild the fish trap and haul facility at Sunset Falls, I firmly believe this effort should be strictly controlled and done within the Forest Service, and Fish and Wildlife department, as the creation of energy through hydropower has been, is and will forever be detrimental to the thousands of salmon that are given additional spawning area through this facility. I believe combining “fish” with “energy” into one consolidation will result in an overtaking by profit making in energy, vs maintainance of fish, who cannot speak for themselves and lobby the state for relief from screens and turbines. The Fox in charge of the Henhouse scenerio.
I believe that the PUD executives are attempting to appear as if they are “working toward” new energy resources by spending precious dollars keeping their jobs, by promoting a restudy of a project that contains fatal flaws, as well as community opposition that will only grow with your continued neutrality. Your statement in favor, or against this project could provide a clear choice for the rate payers in this election, as voters could then could determine your “actual” pathway as a commissioner.
As a rate payer, I will be supporting another candidate who is expressing his opinion. I do not believe stating a neutral position regarding this project will work towrd your re-election, as it displays your inabilty to provide the public with trust in the future of our PUD. Maybe the bond ratings like neutrality, but voters do not.
Thank you for listening. Please accept this letter in the arena of “additional information” vs a threat to your tenure. I am sure your job is a difficult one.