Mayor Hansen speaks about the 2021 Budget, COVID-19 and giving thanks.
Mayor Hansen speaks about the 2021 Budget, COVID-19 and giving thanks.
Last night, the Ferndale City Council passed a unanimous resolution in favor of the Ferndale School District Programs and Operations Levy.
The resolution, introduced by Councilmembers Ryan O’Larey and Erin Gunter, strongly endorses an “approved” vote for the Levy because, “Voting to approve the replacement levy will continue to provide funding for the much-needed support staff, counselors, paraeducators, extracurricular activities, and so much more. Ferndale students benefit intellectually,emotionally, and physically when these are funded.”
Ballots are due Nov. 3rd, 2020 by 8PM. Voters are encouraged to utilize the convenient ballot drop box located in the parking lot adjacent to Ferndale City Hall and the Ferndale Library.
Today we honor our friends and neighbors, the Lummi Nation and the Nooksack Tribe as we celebrate Indigenous Peoples Day. We acknowledge the courage and resilience of those who have lived on this land since time immemorial and urge everyone to dig deep and explore history that has been ignored for far too long
The City is aware of the upcoming youth-led Black Lives Matters rally scheduled for July 31st. The City has not issued a permit for the event as Whatcom County is still in Phase 2 and gatherings over five people are not allowed, however the City has been in communication with the organizers.
For all who choose to participate, whether in support or opposition, the City strongly urges residents to practice social distancing, wear masks, obey all laws and most importantly, peacefully assemble.
“Our students have a civic right, and in my opinion, a responsibility to peacefully raise their voices and advocate for what they believe. As do all of our residents, no matter their beliefs or concerns. Wherever you stand, we are a community of neighbors. Ferndale can all agree to a respectful discourse without ugliness, intimidation or threats,” said Mayor Greg Hansen.
Ferndale Police will be on site to monitor the situation and will take action as necessary to protect the safety of the community and our residents.
Today, Governor Jay Inslee lifted most restrictions on residential and commercial construction, allowing low risk construction projects to resume with additional safety precautions.
Mayor Greg Hansen is grateful that the Governor has listened to our repeated requests to restart construction in a safe and responsible way and this is a good start. For full details of the safety requirements, please see the guidelines available here. For questions about individual projects, please see Community Development Director Haylie Miller at HaylieMiller@cityofferndale.org or 360-685-2367.
Mayor Greg Hansen Statement on Intalco Facility Closure:
“This news is simply heartbreaking. The smelter is part of the lifeblood of our community, and they have been putting food on the tables of Ferndale families for almost three generations. This closure will be a critical blow to our local economy in the midst of a difficult time.
We are Ferndale, we look after each other especially when things look the most grim.
I know that I will do everything in my power to breathe life back into this facility and fight like hell for all of our Ferndale families that find themselves out of work.”
Mayor Greg Hansen shares some of the City’s actions to protect our community from COVID-19 and offers three ways you can help. For more information and resources available during this difficult time check out cityofferndale.org/covid19 or the Whatcom County page at whatcomcovid.com.
Spanish language version available below with Councilmember Herb Porter.
My name is Greg Hansen, and I’m the Mayor of Ferndale. Today, I am going to share with you some of the things we are working on as a City to keep all of us safe during this pandemic and what you can do to help.
Like many other communities around the world, we have closed public spaces to help slow the spread of this disease. This includes closing City Hall, the Police Station, our municipal court and our playgrounds. For the safety of our staff and others, we’ve empowered city employees to work remotely whenever possible. Despite the crisis, the work of the City continues and we are reachable by phone, email or through our website.
As you know, the state and county have enacted measures to close schools, bars, restaurants, libraries and other public places, and yesterday, the Governor issued an order to shelter in place.We know this is hard but these necessary steps that could save literally thousands of lives.
For those of you worried about your utility bills, rest assured, we are not doing shutoffs or charging late fees for the Feb. 28th bill. The next utility bill does not go out until April 30th and we are working to see what solutions are available then. We understand that people are struggling, and this is what we are able to do right now to help.
For families and businesses needing economic support, there is an ever-growing list of resources available. We have linked it in the description of this video.
For those of you worried about your building permit deadlines, please contact our community development staff who are ready to provide you the flexibility needed during this time.
The City is working closely with our neighboring communities. The County has established a Unified Command at the County Emergency Operations Center so that all first responders, medical professionals and public information officers in our area can work together seamlessly. We are proud to be part of this dedicated team working around the clock to protect our community.
Ferndale has always met challenges head on. When there’s a big crisis, we always rise to meet it because that is what we do. We are Ferndale, and we look out for each other. That’s why we need your help. Here are the three things we need everyone in Ferndale to do.
First, stop the spread. That means staying home if you are sick, avoiding gathering in groups, limit trips to the grocery store and wash your hands with hot water and soap. This will help stop the spread of the disease.
But we also need to stop the spreading of misinformation. In a crisis, bad information can make a challenging situation even worse. Please be prudent about what you share. Whatcom County has established a single website for all COVID related information, it is whatcomcovid.com. For Ferndale-specific details, please go to www.cityofferndale.org/covid19.
Second, support your Ferndale businesses. Whenever possible, shop Ferndale. We’ve assembled a list of restaurants providing takeout in our city at www.cityofferndale.org/takeout. Pick up some food and tip well, it really does help. A number of other local businesses are modifying their operation to facilitate convenient pick up and deserve our support.
Finally, look after each other. Call your elderly relatives, keep active as best you can and make sure that your neighbors have the help they need. I know that when we work together and take care of each other, we are stronger than any virus.
As always, we are here to help. If you have questions or need help, don’t hesitate to call or email. Thank you.
Mayor Greg Hansen issued a proclamation effective immediately declaring a state of emergency related to the COVID-19 virus outbreak. This proclamation allows the City of Ferndale to modify policies and procedures so that the City can move quickly and efficiently to address the issues arising from this virus outbreak.
“We have been operating under a state of emergency at various levels for over two weeks. Issuing this proclamation now is really an administrative step to allow the City to be more responsive and effective at meeting this crisis,” said Hansen. “This declaration will allow the City to expedite the purchase of needed supplies, change rules related to the use of sick leave, utilize online options for public meetings, change hours of operation at City Hall, or institute flexible work schedules for employees who need it.”
This action matches the recent declarations of emergency at the County, State and Federal level. “Our priority is to maintain the City operations and services throughout this situation. Ferndale is a fierce community and we will meet this head on,” said Hansen.
“While declaring a state of emergency is alarming to many, we are in unprecedented times,” said Hansen. “This is not just a public health crisis but a community-wide challenge. These will be difficult times for everybody in Ferndale, but I am especially concerned for our small businesses who are taking-on a particularly significant burden as they help our community combat this health emergency.”
To read the full proclamation, click here.
The Mayor urges the public to take the following steps to help support each other during this outbreak.