Skagit County Democrats Action Newsletter for July 26, 2021

DEMOCRATIC EVENTS

1. New Headquarters Office Space
The lease has been signed for the new Headquarters Office space at 2021 College Way, Mount Vernon. We will be occupying the space previously used by Farmer’s Insurance. We are planning to move “on or around August 14”. We are organizing for the move and will need volunteers to help with it in various forms as that date approaches. We will need help transporting office material, breaking down and reassembling desks, clean-up at the old office, and other assorted tasks. If you can help, please contact Lynn Campbell (chair@skagitdemocrats.org)or Curt Huber (curthuber@gmail.com) or Karen Russell (karenrussell1@gmail.com).

In addition to the office space, we will have access to a large conference room on the ground floor for meetings. We will also have access to a smaller conference room on the upper floor. The move comes with ample parking and easy access via College Way or LaVenture Road. Click Here for a map. Although we will be downsizing a bit, the move represents a significant monetary saving over the next several years.

2. Volunteers needed for the Skagit County Fair – THERE ARE STILL SLOTS OPEN THAT NEED TO BE FILLED FOR WEDNESDAY, AUG 11
Skagit County Democrats will be at the fair again this year! We only have a few days left before the registration deadline. Sign up and help us provide the kind of visibility and outreach to our community after this long 18 months apart since the Pandemic began. This will be a great event and a great way to connect with fellow Democrats in the county. Click Here to sign up.

Please contact Hannah Oliver if you have any questions. Call or text: 360-421-7570 – Email: Hannah.marie.oliver@gmail.com.

3. Important dates for upcoming election season – VOTING DEADLINE IS TUESDAY, AUG 3
The following is from the Skagit County Auditor’s Office

  • August 3 Primary Election
    • Ballots have already been mailed!
    • July 26 – Deadline to register or update existing registration online and by mail
    • August 3 – Deadline for in-person registration and voter updates – Closes 8:00 PM
    • August 3 – 2021 Primary Election Day – Closes 8:00 PM
    • August 10 – Canvassing Board Meeting – 1:30 PM*
    • August 17 – Primary Election Certification – 1:30 PM*
  • November 2, General Election
    • September 17 – Military and Overseas ballots mailed
    • TBD – Official Logic & Accuracy test
    • October 13 – Domestic ballots mailed
    • October 25 – Deadline to register or update existing registration online and by mail
    • November 2 – Deadline for in-person registration and voter updates – Closes 8:00 PM
    • November 2 – 2021 General Election Day – Closes 8:00 PM
    • November 16 – Canvassing Board Meeting – 1:30 PM*
    • November 23 – General Election Certification – 1:30 PM*

*Times may change if a scheduling conflict arises. Changes will be posted on the Auditor’s web site.

All Logic & Accuracy Tests, Canvassing Board, and Certification Meetings are held at: Skagit County Elections Department, Skagit County Auditor’s Office, 700 South 2nd Street, Room 201, Mount Vernon, WA 98273.

Please note: We need volunteers to be Election Observers. If you are interested in helping with this, please contact chair@skagitdemocrats.org.

4. Skagit County Democrats 2021 Endorsements
The membership has endorsed the following candidates running for office or a board position this year.  

  • Anacortes
    • Ryan Walters
      • Position Sought: Mayor, City of Anacortes
      • Campaign name: Committee to Elect Ryan Walters
      • Campaign E-mail address and phone number: campaign@ryanwalters.com; (360) 610-7770
      • Campaign website: https://www.ryanwalters.com/
      • Campaign mailing address: 1803 10th Street, Anacortes
        WA 98221
    • Amanda Hubik
      • Position sought: Anacortes City Council, Position 4 (At-Large)
      • Campaign name: Friends of Amanda Hubik  
      • Campaign E-mail address and phone number: Amanda4Anacortes@gmail.com; 360-499-3856
      • Campaign website: https://www.amandahubik.com/
      • Campaign mailing address: PO Box 3014, Anacortes WA 98221
    • Sara Holahan
      • Position Sought: Anacortes City Council, At-Large Pos. 5
      • Campaign name: Citizens for Sara
      • Campaign E-mail address and phone number: sara@saraholahan.com
      • Campaign website: http://saraholahan.com/
      • Campaign mailing address: PO Box 1702 Anacortes, WA 98221
    • Anastasia Brencick
      • Position Sought: Anacortes School District 103, Director Pos. 1
      • Campaign name: Anastasia Brencick
      • Campaign E-mail address and phone number: anastasiaforschoolboard@gmail.com
  • Burlington
    • Tonya Bieche
      • Position Sought: Burlington-Edison School District 100, Director District 2
      • Campaign name: Tonya Bieche
      • Campaign E-mail address and phone number: biechebieche@gmail.com; (360)757-1020
  • Mount Vernon
    • Juan Morales
      • Position Sought: Mount Vernon City Council, Ward 1, Pos. 1
      • Campaign name: Juan Morales
      • Campaign E-mail address: morales2021.citycouncil@gmail.com
      • Campaign mailing address: PO BOX 2261, Mount Vernon, WA 98273
    • Richard Brocksmith
      • Position Sought: Mount Vernon City Council, At-Large Position
      • Campaign name: People for Richard Brocksmith
      • Campaign E-mail address and phone number: electrbrocksmith@gmail.com;
        360-826-2094
      • Campaign website: https://www.richardbrocksmith.com/
      • Campaign mailing address: PO Box 372 Mount Vernon WA 98273
    • Melissa Beaton
      • Position Sought: Mount Vernon City Council, Ward 3, Position 2
      • Campaign name: Re-Elect Melissa Beaton to Mount Vernon City Council
      • Campaign email and phone number: melissabeaton@comcast.net; (360)630-7070
    • Stefanie LeJeunesse
      • Position sought: Skagit Public Hospital District Commissioner Pos. 6
      • Campaign name: Vote Stefanie: Stefanie LeJeunesse for Skagit Public
      • Hospital District Commissioner
      • Campaign E-mail address and phone number: info@votestefanie.com; (360)223-3741
      • Campaign website: http://www.votestefanie.com/
  • Sedro-Woolley
    • David Baer
    • Enrique Lopez Cisneros
      • Position Sought: Sedro Woolley School District 101, Director Dist.1
      • Campaign name: Enrique Lopez Cisneros
      • Campaign E-mail address and phone number: sedrounited@gmail.com

A big shout out to all the candidates who have stepped up to run this year. Running for office is hard work and costly. They need our help with getting out the word, phone-banking, door belling, and raising money. Let’s all do our part by giving them our full support.

5. NEWThe Fidalgo Democrats most recent program (Candidates Forum for Anacortes Mayor and School Board) can now be viewed at this link.

6. NEWMark your calendars and plan ahead – Soups for the Democratic Soul, Sunday, Sep 19, 1:00pm – 4:00pm, 628 Old Samish Road, Bellingham
“The 40th Legislative District Democrats are excited to invite you to our first in-person event in over 16 months: our Soup Cookoff! Come vote on your favorite soup and enjoy good conversation and great times. $15 Suggested donation (minimum to vote), free for kids under 12. Registration: https://secure.actblue.com/donate/soups. Music by Sharon Abreu and Michael Hurwicz. It’s a POTLUCK! Please bring a salad or a dessert! We will provide French bread/Rolls and Drinks (water, coffee, juice). We also need chairs so please bring your preferred seat(s) if you’re able! If you or your organization are interested in becoming a contestant and throwing your soup into the ring, please email cedarwaxwings@gmail.com by September 10th for more information! Top 3 winners will win gift baskets.”

7. Redistricting is happening now
The Washington State Redistricting Commission has invited observation and participation in the process. Their website can be found Here. The Commission has also released a “mapping tool” that is available on their site that citizens can use to create redistricting maps. Editor’s Note: this is not a very intuitive tool. Users will want to review the User Guide before trying it out.

8. Headquarters Office Reopening — Volunteers Needed!
“As COVID restrictions have eased and vaccination rates have risen, we hope to reopen the Skagit Democrats office in downtown Mount Vernon in July! As many of our members who previously staffed the office are no longer available, we are in search of some great people to keep the doors open and be the face of the Skagit Dems to our community.

We’re also working on a suite of important projects that volunteers can work on when not interfacing with the public, so that we can improve our capacity to elect Democrats up and down the ballot! If you’re interested or would like more information, please contact staff@skagitdemocrats.org. Thanks for all you do!”

9. Skagit County Democrats Volunteer Opportunities

  • Are you active with social media? If you love to Tweet or post Facebook messages, we need you! Please contact Kat Lohman at kat@sidenoteconsult.com.
  • Are you a policy wonk and are actively tracking bills? Please be part of a new committee – the Legislative Committee. Contact chair@skagitdemocrats.org.

We have various Committees needing volunteers, including the Candidate Recruitment, Social Media, Finance, Outreach, and Fundraising Committees. Due to Covid-19, all events and meetings are online, and everyone is working from home. If you are interested in learning more about volunteering and being on our Committees, please reach out to our Volunteer Coordinators, and they will help you find the right fit for your skills. We can also connect you to the Committee Chairs or our Party Chair. Please reach out to Larry at Larry.Hilliard@gmail.com for more information about Committees or Ashley at ash.gregorius@gmail.com for Outreach and Candidate Recruitment Committees.

10. Join the conversation with Skagit County Democrats on Facebook and Twitter!
Engaging with our social media content by liking, commenting, and sharing helps us reach more viewers, builds community in a digital space, and provides opportunities to better mobilize when opportunities arise. If you haven’t already, please consider:

For questions about Skagit County Democrats social media, please contact OMP@skagitdemocrats.org.

11. NEWLinks of the Week
The Links of the Week provide in-depth pieces and resources the Editor has found to be relevant, insightful, and thorough on important issues of the day.

COMMUNITY EVENTS

1. NEWMarblemount’s Salmon Barbecue and Eagle Festival, Saturday, Jul 31 and Sunday, Aug 1, Marblemount Community Hall, 60155 State Route 20, Marblemount
“Marblemount Community Hall’s sole annual fundraiser will be held July 31 and Aug. 1. This year the barbecue expands to Saturday and Sunday, and will combine Skagit Eagle Festival events with the traditional entertainers and vendors of the festival. All guests will enjoy the famous salmon dinner or hotdog plate with all customary sides on both days, as will the entertainers and vendors.”

2. NEWAnacortes Arts Festival, Friday, Saturday, & Sunday, Aug 6, 7, & 8, 10:00am – 7:00pm, Commercial and 2nd – 10th Streets, Downtown Anacortes
Booths, working studios, food & beverage, music and youth area at 7th Street.

3. UPDATEDCOVID-19 Information
Click Here for the Skagit County Public Health webpage.

Reopening – Washington State has now reopened with some exceptions. The Governor’s Reopening guidance included:

  • Vaccine verification/negative testing: Recommended but not required for large indoor and outdoor events
  • Capacity limitations: No restrictions in restaurants, bars, stores, businesses, theaters etc. (except large indoor events)
  • Physical distancing: No requirements
  • Travelers: Follow CDC recommendations
  • Facial covering/Masking: Not required for vaccinated individuals, unless required by individual business

The WA State Secretary of Health’s mask order will remain in place even after June 30, meaning that people who are not fully vaccinated must continue to wear a face mask in public indoor settings. All people, regardless of vaccination status, are still required to wear masks in certain places, such as:

  • Child care facilities, camps, K-12 schools, and other youth settings where children are present or expected to be present;
  • Health care settings, in accordance with CDC health care infection prevention and control recommendations;
  • Correctional facilities in areas where incarcerated individuals are present or expected to be present;
  • Homeless shelters in areas where individuals being served are present or expected to be present;
  • Public transportation and transportation hubs, including airports, bus or ferry terminals, train and subway stations

Businesses and local authorities will continue to have the right to be stricter in their masking requirements after June 30. Guidance for employers is available on the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries website.

Masking helps protect those who are unvaccinated, including children who are not yet eligible to be vaccinated and others with auto-immune or other conditions that prevent them from being vaccinated. Parents should be reminded that there is real risk to children until vaccinations are available. Kids who aren’t vaccinated still need to wear masks, though children younger than two years old should never wear a mask due to the risk of suffocation.

For more information on what reopening entails, refer to the follow links: https://www.doh.wa.gov/Emergencies/COVID19/FrequentlyAskedQuestions or https://www.governor.wa.gov/issues/issues/covid-19-resources/covid-19-reopening-guidance.

COVID-19 Vaccines – COVID-19 Skagit County Public Health DRIVE-THRU Vaccination Site at the Skagit County Fairgrounds HAS NOW CLOSED. Other local vaccine sites can be obtained Here by entering your Zip code.

*New* Pop-Up Vaccine Clinics this summer! Find us at the following Skagit County locations:

  • Tue, July 27: Alger Fire Station from 3-5pm
  • Wed, July 28: Skagit Transit Station, Downtown Mount Vernon from 5-9pm
  • Wed, July 28: Skagit Valley Softball Fields from 5:30-7:30pm
  • Thu, July 29: Boys & Girls Club, Cascade Middle School from 3-6pm**Get vaccinated at this location & get entered to win a free Xbox!**
  • Thu, July 29: West Winds Motel, Mount Vernon from 4-7pm
  • Fri, July 30: Skagit Valley Softball Fields from 5:30-7:30pm
  • Wed, August 4: Immaculate Conception Regional School from 11am-1pm
  • Sat, August 7: Cascade Middle School, Sedro-Woolley (times TBD)
  • Wed, August 11: Skagit Transit Station, Downtown Mount Vernon from 5-9pm
  • Aug 11-14: Skagit County Fair from 10am-10pm

All individuals 12 years of age and older are now eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. Parent/guardian consent to vaccinate will be required for all dependent minors (ages 12-17) and can be provided either in-person or over the phone at the time of the appointment. Please note: 12-17 years old will need to receive the Pfizer vaccine, as this is the only vaccine currently approved for use in minors.

Click Here for the Skagit County Public Health Department vaccine webpage and the most current information about availability. Evening appointments are now available at the Fairgrounds. On March 31, Governor Inslee announced that all adults, ages 16 and older, are eligible for vaccination.

Testing – Skagit County now lists several locations for COVID-19 testing. Click Here for the list.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

1. Listen to Speak Up! Speak Out! Radio
Listen to Speak Up! Speak Out! – a half hour radio show committed to community, peace, justice, and non-violence issues. The show has aired on Community Radio stations (times subject to change) – KSVR 91.7 FM (Skagit Valley College), Wednesdays 5:00pm, rebroadcast Sundays 8:00pm; KSVU90.1 FM, Hamilton, Sundays 8:00pm and Thursdays 8:00am; KMRE 102.3 FM, Bellingham, Sundays 11:00am and Wednesdays 7:30am. Our shows are available online. Stream or download a show at http://speakupspeakoutradio.org/.

NEW – Speak Up! Speak Out! A WEEK FROM WEDNESDAY, Aug 4 – Advancing human rights and democracy
This week our FINAL show is courtesy of the Fidalgo Democrats – Fostering social justice and equity. Listen to learn how bigotry impacts our lives, and what is being done to combat it — nationally, in Washington state, and locally in Anacortes. Devin Burgart, Executive Director of the Institute for Research and Education on Human Rights, a social justice organization, will discuss who they are, what they do, and how they do it. They are dedicated to defend against bigotry & defending democracy & human rights. Terry Kyllo and Anthony Young then talk about IDEA (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity in Anacortes) and how to build transformative relationships.

The full program can be viewed via this link – Fidalgo Democrats -“Advancing human rights and democracy”
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Many thanks to our listeners since we began in March of 2008, but this is our swan song. Our website will remain active for at least another year so people can go back and listen to shows they might have missed. (And might have been part of . . . ) We’d love it if others chose to continue reporting on various progressive issues here in Skagit/Whatcom.