“The Center for Justice has brought new perspective and fresh air into this town. Before the Center for Justice was established, it seemed to me that there was one dominant public perception and it was hard to fight that, hard to question that, hard to have a different point of view. It was as if a thumb was on the scale. And though you knew something was right in your heart, it was hard to express that. That’s what the Center for Justice has done. It’s changed the equation.”–Councilman Richard Rush.
Well said, Mr. Rush. Yesterday morning DTE had the pleasure of attending “Breakfast For The Environment” and reading journalist extraordinaire Tim Connor’s uncanny report literally by the time we returned to work. We urge you to check the recap HERE.
The event was an educational presentation on the Center’s invaluable Spokane River work and land use decisions. Spokane Riverkeeper Rick Eichstaedt highlighted cases such as toxic algae growth and the Bigelow Gulch road expansion that would impact wetlands. Other presenters included Gonzaga Environmental Law Clinic director Mike Chappell, and Executive Director Breean Beggs.
Beggs presented The 2009 Environmental Achievement Award to Bart and Lindell Hagen for their “unwavering belief that our natural resources are precious and should be protected and preserved.” Upon receiving the award, Beggs told him they did not have to make a statement, but “most people in Spokane probably figure that the most dangerous place in town is between me and a microphone.”
In addition to Rush, Mayor Mary Verner, State Sen. Lisa Brown, and council members-elect Jon Snyder and Amber Waldref were all in attendance, as well as District 3 state representative candidate Andy Billig. In a room full of lawyers, Verner spoke sarcastically and acknowledged the Center has sued the municipality: “So when it’s the Center for Justice that is taking a position that is opposing the City of Spokane, not that that ever happens, I appreciate you and I appreciate that the Center for Justice is a watchdog for the public interest in this community."
Also, big news: Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., will be visiting Spokane on May 20th, 2010 to promote the work of the Spokane Riverkeeper and other regional Waterkeepers. Stay tuned.