Island County Commissioners adopt resolution in support of NAS Whidbey and the Coupeville NOLF

On 8-12-2013 the Island County Commissioners adopted resolution C-80-13 which is a resolution that is titled:

“In the matter of proclaiming support for Navy Region Northwest installations in particular Naval Air Station Whidbey Island with it’s Outlying Field in Coupeville.”

This proclamation was brought to the Commissioners by Commissioner Emerson and was passed on a 2-0 vote. Jill Johnson and Kelly Emerson voted yes and Helen Price Johnson abstained from voting.

To view the complete proclamation click below:

Proclamation in support of NAS Whidbey and the NOLF in Coupeville

Good job commissioners!


    1. She is showing her true colors but it seems no one on the Islands is looking…

      THIS is why Jeff Lauderdale would have made a better Commissioner than Helen. I do not believe that Jeff would have played the special interest groups the way Helen does.

      We need leaders that look out for all of those in the county not just the special interest groups that show up at the commissioner meetings or those that use well placed campaign donations to gain influence.

  1. “… Proposed to the Commissioners by Commissioner Emerson and was passed on a 2-0 vote. Jill Johnson and Kelly Emerson voted yes and Helen Price Johnson abstained from voting…”

    So who is shocked by Price-Johnson hiding in the closet when it’s time to state what she really believes
    You and several othes told us that would happpen when it came time to Vote with comments like these:

    HPJ survives off of special interest groups like the CER. HPJ is also one of the commissioners that overruled planning and the hearing examiner to allow expanded operations at the Crocket Barn. HPJ was also one of the commissioners that encouraged building the new transit facility and interpretive center for Ebeys Reserve directly under the flight path of the NOLF…
    She is no friend of the Navy by allowing and encouraging development that is bound to be incompatible with the Navy’s mission. Death by a thousand little cuts or in this case decisions…
    HPJ has to cater to the Crocket cronies, they are her bread and butter as far as donations go. Espina and the others are giving her quite a nice nest egg to work with in battling the pro OLF crowd.

    These progressive groups all have donated a lot of monies to her coffers. She is an established arm of the progressive movement in Island County and Sustainable Whidbey Coalition (‎ )

    Power and greed will start to show its ugly head and the progressive machine will try to destroy Island life..wait till they start to push gun control again!

  2. “moveon no surprise here”. ( Cliche think-speak Helen probably spent all weekend getting direction on the pro and cons for amending or deciding how to vote vote on the resolution and prepping some imaginative excuses to utilize if necessary. I recall a short time ago that she was opposed to dropping the curb side (C.S.) recycling ordinance, but offered a mean-nothing amendment to the resolution which passed. However when the vote on the amended motion came up, she didn’t vote for the motion. Such are the obstructive tactics she’s learned in her bolshevik training. Future votes of “present” may be necessary when an “abstention” would be too hairy.

    P.S. Visited Cabelas a few days ago. All ammo shelves were still stocked full at 1:00PM on that Saturday, except for .22L.R.

  3. That is!! That’s enough… After the abstention today, I think I will spend my money in districts two and three. Until commissioner HP Johnson steps up and requires a change to the building code, that addressed sound mitigation to the structures under the flight path of the Coupeville OLF, I am staying away. I am not going down there, because the residences of the Reserve say it is not safe.

    She can also work to add a full Accident Potential Zone (APZ) around the airfield at Coupeville as should have been done years ago to insure the people who buy or build in central whidbey can be assured there is a 75 year old air field down here there and we do use it.

    1. Don’t we have enough bureaucracy already? Why make homeowners be required to add sound mitigation to their own homes? If they want it, fine, they can add it.

      The sound of freedom includes the county not being involved in babysitting homeowners.

      As to the rest of your comments … sheesh.

      1. If the county does not do something locally to get ahead of this alleged “dangerous health hazard” in Central Whidbey, the courts will. This can end up like the EOD Group having to stop dive training in Crescent Harbor. They were sued also and the courts said they had to prove they were not effecting baby salmon and whales. Since this was not achievable, the entire group was packed up and moved to Imperial Beach.

        Why we got septic inspections and a clean water utility district and tax with less data. A couple lines in the building code requiring the mitigation for the sound levels recorded in the COE noise report is easy. Requiring mitigation and NOT allowing any building, sale or lease of properties under the flight pattern, with out the required mitigation of the “health hazard” may apply enough local pressure quell the whiners. They could have done this mitigation themselves, but they would rather sue everyone. They have not done this themselves, they disregarded the disclosures and listened to the motivated seller and realtor. Make them mitigate the noise, and go shelter indoors when we are using the NOLF.

        We need a full accident potential zone around the NOLF also. A few Central whidbey residents may not understand how to count FCLP’s, or a noise couture maps, flight paths or the noise disclosure forms , but they do understand what airplane crash is. Sound Mitigation and an APZ is easier and more cost effective than not using the NOLF.

        1. We already have some of that built into our county code. In noise zone 2 it is already a requirement to have an outdoor to indoor 25 dba noise reduction and in noise zone 3 a 30db outdoor to indoor noise reduction for any new permits or upgrades.
          All of these and more is located in County Code Title XIV 14.01B Noise Level Reduction Ordinance-

          In my opinion the county has not done a very good job in “advertising” these noise zones and their effects or enforcing them. They have allowed incompatible encroachment IE The new Transit Facilty and Ebey’s Prarie Interpretive Center, Paul Spina’s Crocket Barn and many more. If we keep electing politicians that behind our backs allow encroachment we get what we deserve. While a couple of our commissioners speak with a loud voice about saving the OLF it has not been so in the past. Some of our past, and current commissioners have done everything they can to allow and encourage this encroachment and this is what the FOER are using to make most of their case.

          1. Cliff, I have read the codes requirements. The 25 & 30 dba reduction requirement does not mitigate the COR noise numbers. Its seems fine for N. Whidbey, but not south. The code needs another section for “Central Whidbey” under OLF flight path, and the noise levels the encroachers claim. This is a central whidbey problem, let them mitigate it. Even the Crockett Barn can be insulated and probably cheaper then the legal bills. They all seem to have the resources to insulate.

            Update the requirements of County Code Title XIV 14.01B, add a section for the special people and make them fix their problem. And then Finish the APZ.


            1. You may be right but I am not certain that the COE noise levels are accurate. From what I understand the noise levels were based on the A-6 which from all testing I have seen are noisier than the Growler. This is not just a central Whidbey Problem, there are just as many of those “special people” on the North end. Look at the signs along the hwy on the North end…

              The ultimate goal here is not to mitigate the noise, it is to eliminate it altogether. As soon as the county passes an ordinance requiring increased mitigation for inside the homes they will just switch tactics and complain about outside the home…

              Let’s be clear, the object here is to permanently remove US Navy aircraft from Whidbey Island by any means necessary. There is no way to mitigate anything with people who are looking for the complete removal of the noise.

              1. I agree, there are a couple special people on the north end also, Becky and Garrett can put up all the signs they want. The real goal up north is to get the same price per acre for the property in Dugula Bay and they paid for the Boyer property for his city plat on Hyw 20.

                I don’t believe the COR noise numbers either, but they are their numbers, they paid for them, use them. Can’t hurt if they are over scaled, so what just design to them. It will be really quiet inside if you use the 120 -150 dba numbers they keep tossing around.

                Its a Central Whidbey Problem., let them go FIX IT.

                1. I believe what you are advocating here is probably the best answer. This is following what was done in the past to alleviate the noise issue.

                  This will only end up costing those around the OLF more $$ everytime they build or get a building permit but if that is what it takes so what.

                  If the data that the FOER shows 120db to 150db the county code should be changed to reflect those numbers. Instead of a 25 and 30 db reduction our code should be changed to now require a 35db and 65db reduction from outside to inside to end up with an 85db level inside any new homes or anytime a new permit is requested.

                  This would follow the same logic used when the original noise reduction ordinanace was put into effect. It may also be necessary to revisit all of the special use permits granted in the past several years, they are special use permits or variances and if I am not mistaken they can be revisited as they are special use permits. When we allow farmlands in the noise zone to be used for other uses it has obviously caused problems and all of these other uses are by special permits/variances issued by the county. There is a process for revocation of variances or special use permits under 17.03.260 (g)…

            2. Lets get something straight I am in favor of keeping OLF.
              But the county has shoved a lot down our throat already.
              Noise abatement added 20% to the cost of a very small house I just built.
              I don’t have the extra money quite frankly. I am also descended from island settlers.
              I say shut down the Crockett barn & all tourism near OLF. But don’t shove any more regulations down our throats.
              You need to be careful of your uninformed comments. You are starting to turn off people who would otherwise support OLF.


              1. Point well taken. What would you suggest to force protection on those that have and will make an issue of this? If building is allowed without the noise abatements what are the other options? It is obvious that you having lived here you are well aware of the issue and the noise and have determined that it not that big of an issue to you, just like a lot of us. How do we protect against those that build in the noise zone and then complain about the noise? Should there be a disclosure and an opt out for those like yourself? Then the question comes up what happens when you are gone and your home is sold? None of us (I think) wish to see more government regulations that adds cost to anything but what are the alternatives?

                1. Keeping parcel sizes from getting smaller and smaller within a noise zone and/or APZ is conducive. Cap all parcel sizes at ten acres or greater will prevent over populating the area and minimize the encroachment issue.

                  Paul(a) Spina is responsible for his/her mess at Crockett Estate. Anyone dumb enough to buy property sight unseen then turn it into a Party Barn @ $3000 per event deserves what he/she gets. Paul(a) has millions of dollars therefore, she has the means to provide her own noise mitigation. Unfortunately, Paul(a) and several other believe that the world revolves around them therefore, everyone else must conform to their wishes.

                  This is another Progressive Democratic Socialist elitist trait.

              2. Red The county noise reduction code ( ) was done off a 1974 study when the EA-6B arrived. Its has not been updated since 2004. Your home probably OK, but the R-19 insulation and STC-33 rood is really not adequate for energy cost either.. I just built a detached Work Shop /Garage and exceeded all the 25 Dba reduction requirements, I did it for energy conservation. I did not even get into the noise abatement at all. But the code needs updating, the COR did the noise study, use those numbers and mitigate.

                The current requirement seems to be OK North whidbey. The TC-33 roof has been around for 45 years. The code is really out of date. I say central whidbey needs a better code to protect the reserve. Gee if its that dangerous the park service could to close the reserve.

                I just blew in 10 bails of insulation in the attic last December. I wanted to reduce my heating cost. I did 10 bails because it was cheaper than doing the required 4 and renting the machine. ( the blower was free with 10 bails) Now I will admit 3-4 feet of loose fiberglass in top of the 12″ bats is overkill. But the jet noise went away also. So for $250.00 and a 10′ piece of 3″ black ABS pipe, in two hours, I fixed the noise by accident. Energy savings payback is 2.5 years.

                I agree we do no want any more regulations either. A small group of your neighbors evidently need to be protected. They can not figure it out for them selves. They are claiming it is a public health hazard. If so the public needs to take action regulate it.

                The Central Whidbey residents like your self, who can live with the air strip, have been mostly silent and allowed a dozen or so of your neighbors to speak your behalf. The 200 residents that filled of the survey for the mayor and HPJ were pretty clear in their desire to close the field. Now have petitions, lawsuits, etc. that is threatening the Safety of about 500 aircrews and the electronic warfare capabilities of DOD. If some push back effects you, I am sorry, but you neighbors need to be protected.

                But on the other hand, the NOLF is the best FCLP training area available, especially at night, NASWI has too many lights and does not represent what the ship looks like at at night. Plus we can not do the other flying while the duty runway is tied up with FCLP’s. The COR group has a stated goal to close the OLF airfield, next is NASWI. A small group of your neighbors evidently need to be protected from themselves. When they can not or will not figure out a solution, the the public needs to figure it out for them.

                The code update is pretty simple. Its a local remedy. It will not take federal courts and five years to accomplish. The FAA and EPA have mitigation designs, the COR has data that can be used. The county can have a period for compliance, that can also look at the past variances and waivers. The County should start all with commercial / public properties first this is where the greatest risk is . Then move to other structures. If you are caught up because of geographics, I am sorry, but COR says you are in danger. Blow in some insulation, and shelter inside then they planes are using the airfield.

  4. I’ll take the noise of jets & lower taxes any day to the Ruckus that often comes out of the Crockett barn.

    BTW island county does have severe noise mitigation in place for new construction & remodels.
    I am just building a small house for myself which happens to be in the noise zone near OLF.
    I can tell you the noise mitigation measures required by the county added $20,000+ to what should have been an $80,000 house.
    I am not wealthy like Paul/Paula? spina & (his/hers??) cohorts.
    So it has put me in a very difficult financial position, because of the added expense.

    I think those who of you are boycotting Coupeville are hurting more Pro-OLF people than the “prevent the islands future” or “Concerned citizens for more Califonication” or whatever Spina & Co. call themselves this week.
    Don’t be afraid to come on down the noise won’t hurt you a bit.

    In other thoughts:
    It appears that HPJ’s motivations are to “grow” Island government, however if this lawsuit results in a base closure it will wipe out island governments taxbase for decades.


    1. Let’s be honest. Closing the OLF will decimate jobs, home equities, and close businesses, especially the public business of the county government.

      Salaries for commissioners will roll back to commissioners who have to volunteer instead of collecting a paycheck.

      Hmmmmmmm …. not a bad idea that last part. Too bad the sacrifice would be too great.

      1. Decimate is the incorrect word. It implies removing a tenth.
        “Economic Genocide” would be more appropriate.


  5. Helen Price Johnson is actually doing her job and representing her constituent’s wishes. She and the Mayor held a Coupeville meeting in which the citizen’s voted to have the training flights moved to Oak Harbor and OLF shut down.

    Go to : watch the video, look around, closing OLF is the desired result. The founders of the group has a law firm in Coupeville, video mentions long term ties to Coupeville, the family owning the local grocery store. Downtown Coupeville businesses are tourist orientated. Does anyone believe the Mayor and Island commissioner aren’t doing exactly what Coupeville’s business community and citizens desire them to do? As a whole, without regard to homeowner’s noise agreements or any other consideration, US Navy shut down OLF now. If this involves the rest of America footing the bill for moving squadron’s, so be it. This is their choice and a lawsuit has been filed to set things in action.

    I see the local paper put out spin after spin on the situation. The town is doing what it thinks is best for them, so why the spin?

    The latest spin is over possible loss of shopping business, and how divisive that would be for the Island. Well the lawsuit may end up as a win lose or draw, but long after the issue has been decided….

    I will still know that the smile welcoming me into a Coupeville business is not for me as a neighbor, but for my wallet.

    1. Right Keith, “Helen Price Johnson is actually doing her job and representing her constituent’s wishes.” AND, her conctituents have typically only been small special interest groups that made big contributions to her election and re elections war chests.
      It was very good for the tax and spend Commissioner, HPJ, because she had another tax and spend Commissioner that supported ALL of each others desires; not one thought or care of what the results would do “TO”, not “FOR” the majority of County citizens
      Things changed with the last election…Homola being no longer at her beckon call
      Helen must now accept that the 2 to 1 voting power that she once owned is history

      1. Yes that is correct HPJ’S constituents are a minority whilst most of us in district 1 support the navy.
        Island county GOP needs to field an effective candidate in ’16.
        I am not sure that the last candidate was.


        1. Do we have an Island County GOP here? If so they have been silent on every subject that matters to conservatives.

          The Island County Repubican Womens groups and RIC have done more good than anyone else in the County. The Republican party here is just plain absent.

        2. Hate to burst your bubble but HPJ’s constituents are not a minority. After examining the last few elections involving electing commissioners, the blue versus red in Island County is a direct parallel to the civil war. The Republicans situated in north Whidbey versus the Progressive Democratic Socialists situated from Coupeville all the way to Clinton. If HPJ’s constituency were in fact a minority then we would have never seen three DemonRats elected as a commissioner.

          1. Let me rephrase.
            Coupeville itself is quite conservative. I only have a few neighbors that are hard core lefties. Paul/Paula spina being the most vocal. Most of the ones that are. Are the aging hippy douchebag bent on kalifornication variety.
            But drive south past admirals cove & it becomes a different story. You are suddenly in the land of the left.
            If you had 3 left turning wing nuts for commish for a while that was more to do with the failings of the GOP at many levels & a general dislike of Bush amongst the not so conservative.
            Bush is now long forgoten & the current regime has done much to alienate much of the support the left built up over the previous decade.
            Given the right candidate & proper organization first district can be won also. But it will take both things & I don’t see either yet.


            1. Coupeville is not conservative. During the 2012 General Election precinct 153, which is Coupeville, Helen Price Johnson received 630 votes, Jeff Lauderdale received 352. Meanwhile Angie Homola received 579 votes and Jill Johnon received 409.

              HPJ took 22 precincts, Jeff Lauderdale took 26. Angie Homola took 20 while Jill Johnson took 28.

              I do agree with several of your points.

              Getting a conservative elected for District One won’t happen when the Republican Party on Whidbey is split. District One has Republicans of Island County (RIC) while districts 2 and 3 have Island County Republican Party (ICRP.)

              RIC championed Wayne Morrison, who admitted he voted for HPJ, while ICRP championed Jeff Lauderdale. So much for working together.

              1. At one time there was a plan to install a gate at Greenbank to keep them from coming North. It now looks like that gate needs to be just this side of Coupeville :)

                1. What is needed is a semi-load of d-CON because what we have here is a severe DemonRat infestation.

      2. No argument here Bill, my point is the apple is rotten to the core.

        How silent were Oak Harbor business owners over Pioneer Way? The changing face of Island county politics you mention might have come from that? Nobody is upset in Coupeville and things are going as planned. Not just a special interest group this time.

    2. Seems to me that most of the military who use the OLF field are not Coupeville residents. These are our young people, who we are training to become leaders.

      Who should we support? A handful of Coupeville residents who are so wealthy they can easily afford a move, or the sons and daughters who defend us so well when needed?

      I feel for the businesses of Coupeville. But I think it’s time we stood up on the side of supporting those young Naval people who put their lives at risk for all of us, no matter where they were born or where their families live. Their lives are the most important aspect of this ridiculous controversy.

      Support OLF airfield uses and training. All of it is important to all of us in this united country.

      Coupeville has enough taxpayers money paying to keep the “reserve” a beautiful place. Let’s not give them everything, the selfish few who have the loudest voices and the fattest wallets.

      1. Lets just be fair a lot of Coupeville residents have no problem with OLF.
        I did not attent meeting in Coupeville because I signed noise diclosure on everything I have ever owned here.
        I see it was a mistake not to show up. I won’t let it happen again.


        1. The special interest group called Friend of Ebeys reserve are certainly getting the attention of one of our commissioners regardless of those disclosures. This is how our county works, start a special interest group, pay off a local politician with campaign donations and you will then have a seat at the table and their attention. A regular citizen gets nothing.

          1. “… pay off a local politician with campaign donations and …”
            PDC shows several max allowed $500 donations to her over the years and to Homola before she was booted out last election. Don’t be alarmed to discover when the RINO starts doing “paybacks” to her special interest friends in the future
            As you said, Cliff, “This is how our county works”

  6. Unfortunately HPJ represents the district with the most 1%er’s on the Island. Obama loves all these people because they are mostly elitists who love BIG government. The more they donate to the progressive socialist democratic party, the more their wishes are attended to. In other words they buy HPJ.
    These people have mostly migrated from the Seattle and California areas and they bring all their left wing baggage with them. They want to make Island county a left wing utopia like the San Juans.
    There is a lot of money coming from the Rainbow Coalition among others to bring gun control to Whidbey Island and other areas of the state.
    The Conservatives on the Islands need to take a stand against these evil ones from the dark side. We will not roll over, we will fight!

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