Letter: PDC complaints against group were unfounded


Last November, Allen McPheeters of Oak Harbor wrote a latter which painted a misleading picture of supporters of the South Whidbey Schools’ construction bond. Instead of being factual and offering us ‘empirical evidence’ (which he often asks of others), McPheeters’ letter read like a hit piece.

McPheeters said: “the raising and spending of funds … by a group that has not registered with the Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) – in violation of state law – seems to be the real story here”.

The facts – the real story: Last September, David C. Adams filed a PDC complaint against “Parents and Grandparents for South Whidbey Schools.”

In January of this year the PDC responded:

• “There is no evidence the committee (parents, etc.) exceeded the mini reporting limits. The allegations of (two) violations are unfounded.”

• “Organizers of GoBlueWhidbey were not responsible for the campaign activities associated with the Parents, etc.”

• “There were a number of technical issues the Committee had to work through … which added to the delay for the reporting. Once the Committee started working with PDC … they were very responsive and worked diligently to correct the reporting errors.”

• Ultimately the PDC said that the actions of the parents/grandparents do “not amount to a … violation that calls for further investigation”.

David Adams provided two witnesses in his complaint. One of them, Bruce Ayers of Bellingham, told me that Adams is one of his ‘clients’ who he helps with filing PDC complaints. But otherwise, he knows nothing of the complaint, its details or its outcome.

McPheeters went out of his way to list bond supporters, including current and former elected officials and people associated with the district. This feels like pure mean-spiritedness on his part, since none of these people are guilt of any crimes, except supporting our schools.

The other ‘real story here’ is that the South Whidbey Schools’ construction bond passed with over 60% of the votes!

Given this outcome and the outcome of the PDC complaint – that no charges were filed and no citizens were found guilty – I think it would be fitting for Mr. Allen McPheeters to offer a public apology to everyone he mentions in his letter. This is the least he should do if he’s as non-biased and non-judgmental as he claims to be.

David Freed