Letter: Island County, not Navy, is at fault for failings

Editor,

I was puzzled when I read that the people of Admirals Cove are suing the United States Navy over noise from the EA-18G Growlers. The Navy has been on Whidbey Island since 1942 and, in 1943, opened the Outlying Field in Coupeville for landing practice.

The first jets arrived here in 1948 on the P2V patrol planes and were followed in 1958-59 by the A-3 Skywarrier. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, the A-6 Intruder arrived, followed closely by the EA-6B Prowler.

My point is that jets have been here for a long time. It should come as no surprise that county government has profited and grown as a result of the Navy’s presence. Building and population growth all spell money for the county.

The county, however, has failed in its responsibility to its citizens and, over the past 50-plus years, has approved hundreds of building permits in the noise zones and accident zones attending not only the Outlying Field in Coupeville, but the main field by Oak Harbor as well.

The United States Navy’s job is to protect the United States of America, not just Washington state or Island County. People all over this country make sacrifices so that they can.

Island County government failed its population and are the ones who deserve to be sued. Stop going after the deep pocket and go after the ones responsible.

Robert E. Clark

Oak Harbor

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