Isn't It Weird That ... State Sen. Don Benton (R-17, Vancouver) objected to former Gov. Chris Gregoire's appointment of former state Sen. Cheryl Pflug (R-5, Issaquah) to the Washington Growth Management Hearings Board on the grounds that Pflug was insufficiently qualified for the job, arguing that Pflug should have to go through confirmation by the full state senate, instead of simply being appointed by the governor?
Benton, a conservative Republican who fervently opposes building light rail as part of the Columbia River Crossing project connectng Vancouver and Portland, was recently appointed to head up Clark County's environmental services division by the Clark County Board of Commissioners, which includes two Republicans and one Democrat (the Democrat, Steve Stuart, voted against Benton's appointment and promptly stormed out of the meeting).
Ordinarily, county rules require candidates to go through a standard hiring process, which includes meeting minimum requirements like "eight years of responsible management experience directing complex environmental services functions and services, or related operations." Benton, a marketing consultant, does not meet that requirement.
Last night, the AP reports, hundreds turned out to a commission meeting to critize them for their Benton appointment.
We have calls out to both Benton and Mielke to ask them about the controversy.