Letters to the Editor

Heroes don’t build without a permit

I was saddened and shocked when I read the letter written by Ms. Thompson of Clinton, calling Kelly Emerson a “hero” for building without a permit and building in a wetlands area.

We have building codes and wetland codes for a reason. In my years as a fire investigator I have seen house fires from people wiring their homes with cheap extension cords, I have seen structures fail due to poor construction. As to wetlands, just yesterday after the heavy rains, we had a large amount of water flowing down Troxell Road, coming from property that has previously been cited for wetland violations. Water has never flowed in this direction before.

Now to this “hero” thing: in 1995, four firefighters lost their lives fighting the “Pang” fire in Seattle, one of the contributing issues in these heroes’ death was years of major remodeling without permits. The firefighters were on the first floor and the fire was in the basement. Two-by-four studs instead of heavy timbers as would be required by code held up this first floor. The basement fire destroyed the small wall studs quickly, the floor cantilevered and these brave heroes fell to their deaths into the fire.

Who was the hero here, the firefighters or the persons who illegally without permit did the construction in this building? I am going with the firefighters. I guess Ms. Thompson and Ms. Emerson would side with the illegal builder and claim the firefighters were trespassing. This story demonstrates why we have building codes and inspections.

If Ms. Emerson wants to live in a county without building codes she should move to Idaho, there is a county there that has no building codes, but even there you need an electrical permit and inspection. I wonder if she pulled an electrical permit for her new construction?

Lastly, Kelly Emerson is no hero, it appears she is just the opposite. The law is meant for everyone but Kelly, I guess that is why there are still campaign signs in the ditches of Troxell Road, bearing her name, she does not even have to pick up her signs as required by state election code. She is an embarrassment and disgrace to this county.

Jay Brand

Oak Harbor

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