All of Whatcom votes on Nov. 3
WHATCOM — Jeff McClure, a commissioner of Public Utility District No. 1 of Whatcom County since 2009, will seek reelection this fall.
McClure, a founding partner in his Bellingham architectural firm, is running in District 1, which includes much of Bellingham plus Sudden Valley, Van Zandt, Acme and Glenhaven. However, the entire county will vote on the position, which has a six-year term, in the Nov. 3 general election.
McClure said he chose to run for another term because the PUD is facing a rapidly changing economic and environmental future. Without his experience, only one of three commissioners would have more than two years of service on the board.
The two other commissioners are Atul Deshmane, elected in 2018, and Michael J. Murphy, elected in 1998. McClure is the current board president.
This elected position pays $30,804 annually.
This is a critical time due to climate change, the coronavirus pandemic and the impending closure of Alcoa Intalco Works, a major PUD customer, he added.
McClure said he is proud of all the PUD does accomplish.
“Whatcom County PUD No. 1 has been amazingly productive in the last two years, all without seeking property taxes from residents and businesses,” he said. “Last year, the PUD entered into an interlocal agreement with the Port of Bellingham to extend broadband infrastructure throughout the county. In 2018 the PUD created a pilot program in conjunction with the state Department of Health to work with water associations throughout the county and help them meet more stringent drinking water standards so they are able to access state and federal grants.
“The PUD also has been working with a locally based manufacturing company to develop a new technology to process dairy waste before it becomes a problem in the watershed. The project was the first of its kind in Washington State.”
The PUD is actively involved in watershed planning and maintaining services to its current service area at Cherry Point and Grandview Industrial Park near Interstate 5, McClure said.
“As the world moves into a transitional energy economy, the PUD is preparing to anticipate what that will mean for Cherry Point,” McClure said. “This industrially zoned area has been and continues to be the location of many family-wage jobs. The PUD and the Port of Bellingham are working closely to discover what the next chapter for Cherry Point looks like. That future should be a reflection of the sustainable economy and may include development of a sustainable technology campus, large-scale solar or production of other sustainable energy resources.”
McClure has been practicing architecture in Bellingham since 1983. The 15-member RMC Architects firm has designed numerous projects in northwest Washington.
For more on McClure’s campaign, call 360-224-8432. A website and Facebook page will be live later.