The Clagstone Meadows incident is the latest in a disturbing string of actions by county commissioners suggesting a disregard for the laws they’re tasked with upholding. The project—a win-win for sportsmen, conservationists, and Stimson Lumber Company—was opposed by two commissioners in an illegal letter that they composed in violation of the Idaho Open Meetings Act.
This is not the only recent case of commissioners flaunting the regulations. The board fired county planner Dan Carlson last fall, after he filed a grievance against commissioner Todd Sudick. Sudick allegedly demanded that Carlson break the law to expedite a Building Location Permit. Other planning department employees have corroborated Carlson’s claim, adding that Sudick regularly confronted employees aggressively. Now there is another suit for wrongful termination by the county’s top land-use planner, Clare Marley, who was demoted and then fired.
Then there’s the spectacle of the commissioners violating Bonner County Revised Code in order to make changes to the law, in spite of objections from the Planning Commission. I am concerned that the very officials we entrust with administering our laws may consider themselves exempt from these same standards. This is no longer the rule of law!