Anacortes Police Chief Bonnie Bowers participated in a post-fossil fuels protest debrief Tuesday morning with the Skagit County Commissioners. The chief said law enforcement and safety measures associated with the three-day event came with a $57,000 price tag for the City of Anacortes. “It was a huge financial cost,” Anacortes Mayor Laurie Gere was quoted as saying in the Skagit Valley Herald. “We want to have a discussion about climate change and our future, but it seems like we paid dearly for one weekend.” Skagit County Sheriff Will Reichardt said his department is still calculating the cost to the County, where staff involvement impacted numerous departments including the Sheriff’s Department, Public Works, the Department of Emergency Management and District Court. Both law enforcement leaders said objectives of safety and minimal disruption of businesses were achieved. Of 52 protestors arrested for trespassing on a BNSF track, none were from Skagit County.
A fourth generation Skagit County native who was moved kicking and screaming from this island community in 1960. I finally reclaimed an Anacortes address in 1980, and I have been in constant celebration of my return since that time. Many of us who call Anacortes home love Fidalgo Island for its natural assets: among them are rugged beaches, pristine lakes, thousands of acres of forestland and some awesome views of the Skagit Valley and surrounding islands. Another element of my love affair with this community is its people, both natives and immigrants. They will “star” in many of my journal entries.
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