I am writing to urge voters to support Proposition 1.
Approval of this proposition simply removes a barrier to potential future citizen involvement in restructuring county districts. Removal of this obstacle would still require gathering the necessary signatures to place a measure on a future ballot to amend the charter.
If such a measure were undertaken between now and the next gubernatorial election in 2016, it would be necessary to gather about 1,600 signatures of registered county voters, a daunting task no one would undertake frivolously.
A recent letter opposing Proposition 1 complains that voters would be “expected to study certain changes to the Charter every year.” This statement is absurd.
The only time voters would need to study a measure is if approximately 1,600 signatures were gathered once a year to actually qualify it for the ballot. The possibility of people going to this level of effort every year is impractical to the point of being impossible.
Another letter writer also from Lopez Island bemoans the action of a “disgruntled lame duck six-member County council” to change our current charter.
It should be noted that the vote was based on what the entire council saw as a structural flaw and was unanimous by the six members, three of whom serve as our current county council.
The essence of the Home Rule Charter is the right of citizens to influence the structure and outcomes of our government. This measure will retain the ability of the people to keep the intended power granted them with the adoption of Home Rule.
Proposition 1 is not about special interests or “end runs” or any other attempt to undermine our government; it is plainly and simply about the people’s rights and freedom.
Please vote to approve Proposition 1.
Janice Peterson/San Juan Island