I was finally contacted this morning by a member of the Bayview Chamber of Commerce. Ralph Jones, still hasn't been called or spoken to about what is going on with the now infamous raffle. I was asked to contact an attorney in Spokane regarding some of my concerns. I did so and had a fruitful conversation with him. We had some disagreement over the definition of the word, "proceeds" which we will both research further.
One possible good thing that has come from this exchange of opinions, is that the attorney found a state bureau called: "The Bingo & Raffle Advisory Group." We both agreed that since an issue at law, and specifically criminal law was at stake, that he would approach this board or bureau or whatever, to get their take on this problem. If they say, hey, no problem, Ralph's Grandson gets paid. If they say, no way, a redraw will occur.
Much of the rancor and anger in the community can be found in the total secrecy that the board has perhaps unintentionally created. Working a problem of this magnitude in the dark breeds a fear that one's motives aren't pure. Hopefully hereinafter, we can provide our investigations in public, and prior to the event, rather than after.
As to the public lynching Ralph Jones experienced at the hands of the board,I consider that indefensible. This man has given more to this community for less recognition than anyone I know.He was criticized for holding the drawing at his business, like he should shut down on the busiest week-end of the year? With a raffle that has gone on for fifteen years, he was told he should have known better, even though many previous board members have won the big one. Whether a raffle in this town will ever be viable again is problematic. The board threw all these jobs at Ralph and he didn't complain, just went out and did them. He has many friends in this area that do not like the way he has been treated.
I have taken notice that where the fear that one or more business owners would take control of the Chamber, it appears that a radical element has indeed done that. Of the six marinas, and about four other businesses, only Ralph's and Macdonald's and perhaps one or two more still actively support the chamber. These are updated figures that reflect the dismay from many businesses that are experiencing anti-business attitudes. Perhaps less confrontation would be helpful as well.Perhaps it's time we work with, rather than against the marina operators. It would appear that the real estate market slowdown will offer new opportunities to approach development without a chip on our shoulders. (heresy)
Parting Shot -- 6.19.13
4 hours ago