March 9th Comments Deadline: Marbled Murrelet Conservation

*Deadline for comments: 5PM on Thursday, March 9th.  Below are two links to download template language, with instructions on where to e-mail your comments.

Sustainable Harvest Calculation DIES Comment Draft Individual Letter

 Individual Support Letter for Conservation Alternative for Marbled Murrelet

A coalition of Peninsula and WA state conservation groups has been working on marbled murrelet conservation for 3 decades – and it has come down to the next few days on two important policies. The State has finally released its Long Term Conservation Strategy and its DEIS analysis. Related and paired to this strategy is the Sustainable Harvest Calculation, a decadal limit for cutting timber on state public lands, and its DEIS. Both will likely significantly contribute to the extirpation of the species.

The two “asks”, which must be submitted separately to DNR:

  1. Marbled Murrelet Long Term Conservation Strategy DEIS comment instructions are specific and found about a third of the way down on this page: Ask: Issue a revised / supplemental DEIS on the Long Term Conservation Strategy considering “The Conservation Alternative” that we are proposing; ask the Commissioner of Public Lands to convene a Task Force that will study and make recommendations on alternative, sustainable, sources of funding for timber counties (trustees) and communities for essential services (school, fire, emergency, health/hospital funding);
  2. Sustainable Harvest Calculation DEIS comment instructions are specific and also are found about a third of the way down on this page: Ask: Issue a revised / supplemental DEIS on the Sustainable Harvest Calculation that implements the “The Conservation Alternative”; and ask the Commissioner of Public Lands to convene a Task Force that will study and make recommendations on alternative, sustainable, sources of funding for timber counties (trustees) and communities or essential services (school, fire, emergency, health/hospital funding).


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State Committeewoman Report

Click here to read Claire Roney’s report on the State Reorganization held 1/27 to 1/28, 2017. Congratulations to Tina Podlodowski, who was elected Washington State Democratic Chair!

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Support SB 5464 Establishing the Washington Investment Trust

WHEREAS Jefferson County Democrats’ bylaws support policies that sustain an
economically vital community;

WHEREAS revenues from every agency of government (cities, counties, and state) are deposited with large national banks and these depositors have the status of unsecured creditors and these deposits have the status of unsecured loans;

WHEREAS each of our government entities pays for the privilege of having their
monies processed by those banks;

WHEREAS the too-big-to-fail banks have been insolvent in the past and laws and bank procedures that led to these failures have not changed;

WHEREAS if these banks were to fail they would seriously threaten our city, county, and state revenues;

WHEREAS in a publicly owned state bank, interest would become revenue rather than
debt, which would reduce our need for taxes and provide money for public projects;

WHEREAS creation of a state investment trust would allow the people of Washington to own and control our own funds and our state would reap the interest that is now paid to the banks.

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that we, the undersigned Democrats residing in Jefferson County, urge Senator Kevin Van De Wege to co-sponsor SB 5464, establishing a Washington investment trust.

Submitted on February 6, 2017 by:
Celeste Bennett,, (206) 295-8578
R. Sidney Collins,, (360) 344-2123
Carol Gallup,, (360) 379-4795
Norm Norton,, (360) 732-4723
Lawrence Scoville,, (360) 379-4795
David Tonkin,, (360) 302-1446


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Money and Government

Welcome to the Money and Government issues action group.


Actions to Take

  • Task: Use the links below to read about SB5465 and companion bill HB2059, and to register your comments on each with the Washington State legislature.

    Click here to return to top of page.

Meeting Notices

Next Meetings:
Location: Jefferson County Library, 620 Cedar Avenue, Port Hadlock

  • Sunday, February 26th, 1pm to 3pm, Shold Room
  • Sunday, March 5th, 1pm to 3pm, Shold Room
  • Sunday, March 12th, 1pm to 3pm, Shold Room

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About / Statement of Purpose

Economic Justice is a Platform Issue.  The following statement on economic justice is quoted from the Washington State Democrats platform:

Economic Justice, Jobs and Tax Fairness  Income inequality is the driving issue of our time. We are committed to a sustainable economy with strong communities based on living-wage jobs, tax fairness, and shared prosperity. (Washington Democrats State Platform, 2017)

Jefferson County Democrats Bylaws bind us to “Endorse and/or support organizations and activities that reflect the Platform of the Jefferson County Democrats and that improve the welfare of Jefferson County, its people, and its natural environment.”

Within JCD, this group will help JCD membership study and track legislation pertaining to money and government, such that the membership can intelligently question candidates for office as well as elected representatives, and inform others.

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Housing & Homelessness

Hello, and welcome to the Issues and Action Group on Housing and Homelessness.


Actions to Take

Meeting Notices

Next Meeting: Sunday, February 26th, 1:30pm at the Umatilla Cottages community room: 2910 Timber Court, Pt. Townsend. Agenda: How we want to meet. Contact  Jan Krick:  541-254-0325

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About / Statement of Purpose

Housing & Homelessness is a Platform Issue. The following statement on social justice is quoted from Jefferson County Democrats platform:

SOCIAL JUSTICE – We recognize our community is diminished by social and economic injustice. The growing gap between rich and poor, the lack of decent and affordable housing, the acknowledged inequity of Washington State’s regressive tax system and the uneven application of laws all erect barriers to our security and success.

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Current Legislation

    • Click here to read about HB  1570 (Protect OlyCap Housing Funds)
      HB1570 Status (updated February 17, 2017): Amended and given a “Do Pass as amended” status in Majority report. Next Steps: Bill will move to the floor. If floor accepts Majority Report recommendation and passes the bill, it will then move to the Rules Committee.
    • Click here to read about HB1085 (Tiny House Bill)

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To join the people who will be leading research and action on this important topic, contact Contact: Jan Krick:  541-254-0325

Click here to return to top of page.

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Urgent Actions

Some things you can do today:


  • March 22, 2017:
    FOUR strong voting bills in our Washington State Legislature need your help to move them out of committee. Three of these bills were co-sponsored by our Legislators, Steve Tharinger and Mike Chapman.
    The public hearings which for these bills which take place tomorrow Mar. 22nd in Olympia at 8 am, and will be held in Senate Hearing Rm 2 in the J.A. – Cherberg Building, 304 15th Ave SW, Olympia, WA 98501.
    But you are needed to contact Senate State Government Committee Chair Mark Miloscia and urge him to take action on HB 1468, HB 1513, HB 1800 and HB 1807 to help make these bills a reality. Miloscia’s contact information is Senator Mark Miloscia, (360) 786-7658, Your CALLS would be preferable by Monday the 27th at the latest to be effective.
    Please show your support for these voting bills. Citizen power is how we win!
    Eleven Day Voter Registration (HB 1468) would allow Washingtonians to register to vote closer to the election day, instead of missing deadlines that are often over a month prior to the election. Public Comments for HB 1468 here.
    Pre-registration of 16 & 17 year-olds (HB 1513) would allow young people to pre-register to vote at the DMW, online, and in person. Upon turning 18, their registrations would activate so that they can vote as soon as they are eligible. As voter turnout declines, we need to be proactive, teach our kids the value of voting, and build the foundations for a lifetime of civic involvement. Thank our very own Steve Tharinger who is a co-sponsor by making Public Comments for HB 1513 here.
    The Washington Voting Right Act (HB 1800) establishes a voting rights act to promote equal voting opportunity by authorizing district-based elections and establishing a way to redress lack of voter opportunity, especially for underrepresented communities. Thank our very own Steve Tharinger who is a co-sponsor of this bill as well by making Public Comments for HB 1800 here.
    The Washington Disclose Act of 2017 or HB 1807 would increase the transparency of contributions by including non-profit organizations among those which must report. Click here to make public comments for this bill.
  • Call Reichert On ACA
    (An Action Request from WA State Dems)

    U.S. Congressman Dave Reichert had previously vowed that “no one will lose coverage” under the Republican health care proposal. But as we know, that’s false. Reichert is lying about Trumpcare and the millions of people who would lose health care or see their premiums rise sky high. And while he’s already voted once to pass Trumpcare out of the House Ways & Means Committee, we need to hold him accountable in advance of a vote of the full House of Representatives.

    Reichert’s office phone numbers are:

  • Washington D.C. 202-225-7761

  • Issaquah 425-677-7414

  • Wenatchee 509-885-6615

    Call Reichert’s office and let him know that Washingtonians expect Congress to expand health care coverage, not cut it! The ACA is the most popular it has been in years, it’s provided health care to 750,000 people in our state, and Republicans are going in the wrong direction.

  • Add Your Name To Our Health Care Petition
    (An Action Request from WA State Dems)

    We’re collecting a petition of names people across our state who want to see health care preserved. If you’ve already contacted the office of Congressman Reichert or taken another action, the next step is to click here to add your name to our petition telling Republicans in Congress: Hands off our healthcare! Or forward this email to a friend, and encourage them to add their name as well. Not only can we report to Congress how many thousands of people are signing these petitions, but we can rally our grassroots base around this important issue.

  • The Senate Committee on Homeland Security is COUNTING CALLS before it finalizes approval of Steve Bannon’s appointment to the National Security Council. PLEASE CALL! 202-224-4751.  HERE’S ALL YOU NEED TO SAY: “Hi my name is ______. I am from ____[state] and am an American citizen. I oppose Steve Bannon being confirmed to sit on our National Security Council.”
  • Contact your Senator about blocking any nominee other than Merrick Garland for Supreme Court. Read more here.
  • Senator Elizabeth Warren has introduced legislation, the Presidential Conflicts of Interest Act, to require the President and Vice-President to divulge and resolve all conflicts of interest in the Dakota Access Pipeline. MoveOn is coordinating petition delivery to each congressperson, asking each congressperson to pass Senator Warren’s bill, and then enforce it. Click here to read the Presidential Conflict of Interests Act. If you would like Jefferson County Democrats to take an official position on the Presidential Conflict of Interests Act, consider submitting a resolution. Click here to read about our resolutions process.
  • Look under our Committees section to find Issues Action Groups that may be working on issues you want to follow and work on. Click here to reach our Committees home page.
  • Volunteer with Jefferson County Democrats to help us provide better, faster coverage on how to fight back! Contact your PCO or e-mail Your PCO’s contact information can be found by clicking here.
  • Follow us on twitter: @JeffersonCoDems. Click here to be taken to our twitter page.
  • Like our facebook page to read posts there: Click here to be taken to our facebook page.
  • Contact information for your elected officials can be found by clicking here.
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The Real Story

January 26th Membership Meeting

While we were saddened to learn of the resignation of our chair, we would be more disappointed if that were the story that overshadowed the real story… because it’s an incredibly positive one.

People in Jefferson County are taking action and willing to make JC Dems the vessel for their voices. Imagine our surprise, delight and gratitude at the sheer volume of members in attendance, including many who just joined or rejoined, ready for action.

As we scrambled to change to a large venue, members old and new alike pitched in and helped move and set up. We can’t thank Chimacum School District Superintendent, Rick Thompson, enough for his emergency hospitality. It is a sign of a healthy body and community that we moved forward so well under exceptional circumstances.

We’re going to make changes as a result of people speaking up last night: bigger venues and rearrangement of agenda items to more quickly facilitate empowering grassroots action.

We have greatly appreciated all of the emails and phone calls of support after the meeting, the patience of everyone who attended last night. And be assured … our eyes as a party are focused resolutely in one direction. Forward. We look forward to seeing everyone back next month and getting to work.

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January Highlights

Phil Johnson

January 3rd — Your Executive Board held their first meeting in Brinnon. Standing Committee appointments were made, and the Chair’s theme of grassroots activity emphasized. The 2017 budget was adopted. An environmental studies scholarship fund was approved to honor the legacy of retired Commissioner Phil Johnson. Holding our March membership meeting in Port Ludlow was approved. More in minutes, to be distributed January 26th.

January 12th — Dems Dined Out.  35+ people gathered at The Cup in Port Townsend for an evening of camaraderie and conversation. Our first Legislators Round Table was announced. Petitions opposing Growler noise quickly filled!

Connie Gallant transitions LD24 Chair to Matt Sircely

January 14th — LD 24 Reorganization. Elected PCOs from Clallam, Grays Harbor, and Jefferson counties voted in four officers. Congratulations to Matt Sircely, Chair; Julie Johnson (Clallam), Vice Chair; Diane Jones, State Committeewoman, and Jeff Engels, State Committeeman. Filling 3 of 4 positions, Jefferson County democrats continue to volunteer as leaders in helping people shape the future through our party. Thanks and congratulations to all! A special thanks to Connie Gallant, for her leadership of LD24 over the past two years.

January 21st – Women’s March in Port Townsend: the Resistance has been born.

January 21, 2017




roll off my tongue
and into the chill of winter.

mightier than swords,

by our resistance.


January 24th –  Meet and Greet Reception at PTCC.  It was great to see so many and hear a great buzz at this coffee reception, prior to  Diane Jones’ PSARA presentation on retirement security.  There was lively debate and networking, a healthy sign among people who are shaping the future through active democracy. Visitors ranged from honored past board members to someone for whom this was their first Dems event; an encouraging dynamic.

Membership Report:
1/1/2016 membership count: 309.
1/16/2017 membership count: 654.

Take our Survey: Click here to help us gather information on the best ways to communicate with people in your area.

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Economic Impact of Invasive Species: Official Report Links

JCD member David Tonkin is thrilled to announce the completion of a Washington State study on the economic impact of invasive species: plants, animals, and insects. David began working on this issue in 2014, with formation of the Scotch Broom Working Group – which he co-founded with Jill Silver, former Chair of the Jefferson County Noxious Weed Control Board.

The public release of the report occurred on January 12. Funded and initiated by several Washington State agencies and conducted by Community Attributes Inc. of Seattle, the study involved 12 invasive plant species, 3 invasive animal species and 3 invasive insect species. Its major conclusions are that these invasive species costs Washington’s businesses and government $1.3 billion and 8000 jobs lost each year, and that the most costly species are: Rush skeletonweed, Scotch broom, apple maggots, and zebra & quagga mussels. Read the press release, fact sheet, and the full report by going to the links below.

It took a lot of phone calls, emails and meetings, but David got support from the Jefferson County Democrats, 24th LD Democrats, and the WA State Democratic Party (aided by several JCD members), a quarter of the WA State Republican Party State Committee, the WA State Assoc. of [county] Noxious Weed Control Board Coordinators, 6 tribes, and a dozen WA business associations representing WA farm, ranch and timber businesses. With that support behind him, he lobbied the relevant state agencies and got support from 2 state agency heads. Then the Washington State Invasive Species Council and Noxious Weed Control Board were able to persuade those state agencies to put together a funding package and do a study of the economic impact of 18 invasive species: plants, animals, and insects

Please note that former JCD E-Bd members George Yount, Bill Miller, Claire Roney, Bruce Cowan, and Deborah Pedersen all contributed to the successful passage of the resolution by the WSDP Agriculture Caucus and Resolutions Committee and finally by the WSDCC. David Tonkin gives special thanks to Jill Silver for her excellent presentation to the Ag Caucus.

Congratulations and gratitude to all who worked hard to focus attention and bring together the forces that created this study. We’ll look forward to hearing from David at our January 26th membership meeting and learning more about how this may impact legislation.

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In Memoriam: Gabe Ornelas

Gabe and Robin Ornelas

We have lost a good friend in Gabe Ornelas, who died this past week of pneumonia. Gabe was a great guy. He and his wife Robin were inseparable, and they consistently showed up together at meetings and celebrations for many years. They were always ready to help, and always took an interest in our issues.

A former LAPD officer, Gabe was proud that he was among the first to participate in the innovation of community policing. He was placed in a special unit stationed in a challenging neighborhood, where officers got out of their cars and formed connections with the people they were meant to serve and protect. It’s easy to see why he would be chosen for the assignment, with his affable, friendly nature, and his great sense of humor.

Gabe and Robin served the party in many ways, especially as a bartender at the Fish Feast and other events. He doorbelled with our candidates, participated in GOTV events for many years, volunteered at Fair events, loved all parades, always ready to lend a hand. Gabe was also always concerned about the health and welfare of friends and others in need. He was the type of person who would literally take the shirt off his back to help someone who needed it most.

Robin and Gabe put life into every celebration, and we are very sad to have lost such a dear friend. Our hearts go out to Robin, who has lost her soul mate.

Bruce Cowan & Connie Gallant

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