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Ferndale Offers Free Metallica-inspired T-Shirt to Encourage ADU Construction

Community Development Director Michael Cerbone, Mayor Greg Hansen, Associate Planner Jesse Ashbaugh and Planning Coordinator Patti Gearhart


Ferndale Offers Free Metallica-inspired T-Shirt to Encourage ADU Construction

Residents who construct an Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) in Ferndale this year can receive a free Metallica-themed shirt courtesy of the City. The first ten property owners who complete an ADU on their property, either attached or detached, receive the shirt, inspired by the Metallica album “And Justice for All” but repurposed to say, “And Housing for All!”

“Building an ADU is great for Ferndale,” said Mayor Greg Hansen, “it adds to our housing supply, provides opportunities for rentals or aging in place, and utilizes existing city infrastructure.”

An accessory dwelling unit is a small, self-contained residential unit located on the same lot as an existing single-family home. An ADU has all the basic facilities needed for day-to-day living independent of the main home, such as a kitchen, sleeping area, and a bathroom.

“Adding an ADU adds value to your property and provides vital housing choices for families, property owners and new residents,” said Community Development Director Michael Cerbone. “So if you are thinking about ADUs, come talk to our permit desk. We are excited to work with you.”

“We understand that offering a free shirt is not going to be the tipping point for anyone deciding to invest in an ADU,” said Hansen, “But it sends a message that Ferndale is enthusiastic about working with our residents to tackle affordable housing, one ADU at a time.”

For more information on building an ADU in Ferndale, check out

T-shirt design


Remembering and Honoring the Point Elliott Treaty

“On Jan. 22nd, 168 years ago, the United States and the Lummi Nation, two sovereign nations, wrote and signed an enduring document outlining how their respective peoples would share the land and resources of this region. That document was the Point Elliott Treaty.
You cannot understand the complexities of the present without an honest look at the past. We urge everyone to take a moment and learn about the Point Elliott Treaty, the history of the Coast Salish peoples who have lived here from Time Immemorial, and our shared heritage together.” – Mayor Greg Hansen
This video, produced by the Children of the Setting Sun Productions, is a great place to start:

City Offices Closed Monday, Jan. 16th in honor of MLK, Jr

City offices will be closed on Monday, January 16th in recognition of his life’s work to challenge violence and bigotry with grace and goodness.
As always, to reach emergency services, please dial 911. City Hall will reopen for normal business hours on Tuesday, Jan. 17th, and our city council meeting will be held that evening at 5PM at the City Annex.

Ferndale 2023 Municipal Budget Available Online

On their December 5th, 2022 Council Meeting, the Ferndale City Council unanimously passed the 2023 Budget. You can click here to access the full detailed breakdown or you can read the Mayor’s budget message below which summarizes what the budget does for Ferndale.


Recently, I stood at the Thornton Overpass construction site, watching in awe as massive cranes carefully lifted girders the size of a city block and placed them on pillars above the railroad tracks. These girders will form the bones of the Overpass, supporting cars, trucks, bikes, and pedestrians for generations to come as they travel to and from our city. As the 130,000-pound components were locked into place, I was struck by the size and scope of the moment we find ourselves in.

Here, on the cusp of 2023, Ferndale is making big changes. We are putting in place the structures, roads and organizations we need to grow as a community. This document reflects and supports those changes and capitalizes on new opportunities to come. Therefore, it is my pleasure to present to our honorable City Councilmembers and the greater Ferndale community, the 2023 budget for the City of Ferndale.

In 2023, the cityscape in which we live will change. We will see the demolition of our beloved Old Main building and the full opening of our new Ferndale High School. We expect to see the Catalyst Project break ground on Main Street. We will see the opening of a brand-new skate park for Ferndale that pays tribute to our industrial history while providing recreation for the future generations. We will see brand new housing developments that reflect the diversity of our community – single family neighborhoods, multi-family near our downtown and low-income housing for those who need it.

In our downtown, we have seen several new businesses open including restaurants, grocery, and retail. Beyond our city core, new manufacturers are bringing fresh jobs, new ideas, and more commerce to our community.

As our city grows and changes, our local government rises to meet the needs of our community. The 2023 budget includes a new police officer – a necessary addition to our dedicated police department that will help keep us safe. It also includes a new planner to keep the permit desk moving swiftly, expanded hours for our park workers, and a new public works crew member to plow our streets and repair our infrastructure.

Like those large girders, we are laying the groundwork for the future. We are designing a new civic campus that will include a new court, council chambers and city hall. We are designing a new stage at Pioneer Park to host more and even better events at the heart of our community. And for the first time, we have hired both a federal and state advocate, to help bring our tax dollars back home from Olympia and Washington, DC for the projects we need done in our city.

During the pandemic, we activated Ferndale Community Services and the Ferndale Downtown Association, expanding their reach and abilities and you will see the impact of those decisions in 2023. Already, Ferndale Community Services is operating a severe weather shelter throughout the cold season and the Downtown Association has distributed thousands of dollars in grants to our downtown community to expand and support our local businesses.

We have done all of this and more through prudent financial management, a willingness to try new things, and good old-fashioned legwork. The actions that we are poised to take in 2023 and beyond are built on solid plans and careful consideration.  Ferndale is a community of doers and innovators, much more than dreamers.  This means that we must be realistic:  we are in an unusual economy, with extremely low unemployment, extreme demand and limited supply of housing, and significant inflation. This budget anticipates that our costs will increase more rapidly than our revenues, and while the budget allows the City to move forward with its plans, we must look carefully at the economics of 2024 and beyond.

Ferndale is becoming known as a collaborative City, and through this teamwork we have been able to do things that larger cities could only dream of.  Rather than pounding the table or making partisan speeches, here in Ferndale, we are focused on doing the work and finding the solutions. As President Truman once said, “It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.”

This budget, like the girders at Thornton, is a key component in that bridge to the future. A future full of change, promise and opportunities for our city.


Thank you,

Mayor Greg Hansen

Ferndale Police Begin Safety Emphasis near School Zones

Ferndale Police Begin Safety Emphasis near School Zones

To remind Ferndale residents to drive carefully near our schools, Ferndale patrol officers will be conducting a safety emphasis over the next couple of months. Officers will be located on or near school property with their lights on to encourage safer driving in school zones.
“We’ve tried being stealthy and writing some tickets and folks continue to go way too fast near our schools,” said Chief Kevin Turner. “We are hoping the flashing lights will do the trick.”
“So if you see one of our patrol vehicles lit up near a school, do not be alarmed,” said Turner, “but do ease off on that accelerator.”
School zones often have pedestrians that may not be aware of passing vehicles. Drivers are encouraged to keep their eyes open and be ready to stop.

Two Positions Available on Planning Commission

Two Positions Available on Planning Commission

The City has a number of Boards and Commissions that work to advise the City Council on a broad array of subjects. These are volunteer positions but absolutely essential to providing quality input to the City’s decision-making process.

There are two upcoming vacancies on the Planning Commission for four-year terms beginning January 1, 2023 and ending December 31, 2026. The Planning Commission plays a vital role in City government by reviewing, conducting hearings where applicable, and making recommendations to the City Council on amendments to the Comprehensive Plan, Titles 16 through 18 of the Ferndale Municipal Code, the City’s Official Zoning Map, and Shoreline Master Program.

To apply for one of these positions, please fill out this application and email it to City Clerk Susan Duncan at Applications will be accepted until 5:00 p.m. December 26, 2022.