Bellingham City Council searchable 2022 meeting minutes / Noisy Waters Northwest

Click the screenshot to access the City of Bellingham City Council meetings page on the COB website

January 15, 2023 Dena Jensen

So, let’s say you want to find out what Bellingham City Council Members might have talked about during their meetings last year or how Council Members voted on a particular motion. Whether it’s the electrification of government buildings, providing new homeless services, moving forward with an immigrant resource center, offering open public comment periods again at their regular meetings, etc. – other than looking in each agenda or set of minutes individually, or watching each meeting, you don’t have much of a way to know. So here’s a little bit of help toward an easier way of finding clues about that.

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Displacement creates a stronger need for increased emergency sheltering options / Letter to Bellingham and Whatcom County officials

Click the screenshot of a NEWS webpage on the website of the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness to read the statement from USICH Director Olivet, “Collaborate, Don’t Criminalize: How Communities Can Effectively and Humanely Address Homelessness”

October 31, 2022 Dena Jensen

On Friday of last week, I had posted on Facebook about a recent article in Cascadia Daily News, “Bike lanes to displace homeless campers on Cornwall. At the time of my post, I was just responding to information in the article. Since that time, I have had a chance to listen to a recording of the Bellingham City Council Members’ October 24, 2022 Committee of the Whole discussion of the proposal to eliminate parking on portions of four Bellingham streets, including the section of Cornwall Avenue that is near the Bellingham waterfront.

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Regarding permitted RV encampment parking / Letter to Mayor Seth Fleetwood and Bellingham City Council

Click the screenshot of text from the Fox 13 article, Olympia the first to permit free RV encampment parking on public street.

May 27, 2022 Dena Jensen
Here are a couple quotes from the Fox 13 article, Olympia the first to permit free RV encampment parking on public street.

“Olympia law says if an RV stays in one spot for more than 24 hours, it can be ticketed and towed. A requirement of the Ensign Road permit is for its occupants not to move—unless they plan to leave the area permanently.”

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Weeks, and weeks, and weeks of parking and sheltering predicaments / Letter to Bellingham and Whatcom County officials

Screenshot of Bellingham Police Department Lt. Claudia Murphy’s 12-30-21 body cam still frame showing a road and parked vehicles covered with snow, blue sky overhead, sun low toward the horizon, and the silhouettes of a person in a hat with their dog

April 10, 2022 Dena Jensen

Sent: Sunday, April 10, 2022, 06:06:37 PM PDT

Dear Bellingham City Council, Mayor Fleetwood, Whatcom County Council, and County Executive Sidhu:

Over the last week or two, I have been reviewing body worn camera recordings of Bellingham Police Department’s Public Information Officer, Lt. Claudia Murphy related to City of Bellingham’s increase in parking enforcement during the current pandemic. 

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Regarding RV parking enforcement and equity in Bellingham / Letter to Bellingham City Council

March 15, 2022 Dena Jensen

Click the screenshot of text describing the IChange Justice podcast, “One Crisis Away from Homelessness” to access the description and podcast on Google Podcasts

Sent: Tuesday, March 15, 2022, 06:25:35 PM PDT

Subject: Regarding RV parking enforcement and equity in our community

Dear Bellingham City Council:

Yesterday I was able to listen to most of your March 14, 2022 Committee of the Whole meeting, and your entire discussion related to the “Update on RV’s and the 72 hour Rule.”  

First, I would like to mention the part of the committee discussion on enforcing parking code for RVs where Bellingham Police Department Lieutenant Claudia Murphy responded to Bellingham City Council Chair Hannah Stone talking about the challenge of packing up camping gear increasing in relation to how often people might have to do that. It was apparent in the discussion that most of the community members undergoing code enforcement were living in their RVs as their primary shelter. 

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Searchable meeting summaries of Bellingham City Council meetings January 2021 through December 2021 / Noisy Waters Northwest

Click the image to access the City of Bellingham meetings page on the COB website

February 5, 2022 Dena Jensen

It finally dawned on me that placing text of the meeting summaries from a series of Bellingham City Council regular meetings in one searchable post could be a way to more quickly discover when certain issues and measures were discussed and/or voted on.

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Kristina Michele Martens shares post-election perspectives with Noisy Waters Northwest

Image of Kristina Michele Martens, the apparent winner of Bellingham City Council’s At-Large seat in the 2021 general election. She will be the first Black woman to serve on that Council. She is smiling in the photo, is wearing a dark top with buttons, and there is green landscaping behind her.

November 8, 2021 Dena Jensen

But I just truly hope that a lot of people that would have normally never paid attention to a Council race or a campaign this long, and never thought that they could see themselves in local government and/or being able to have an impact – I’m hoping I inspired a handful who will go on to do the same, so that there’s just more people who understand the exact crises that we’re up against, being able to discuss them at a level that actually has impact. 

— Kristina Michele Martens
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