Whatcom Farm Bureau 2018 Scholarship Program

The Whatcom County Farm Bureau is offering $2000 in scholarships to qualified Whatcom County students. A minimum of $750 will be awarded to each winner.

Applicants must meet the following criteria to be eligible for a scholarship.

  • Applicant must be a high school senior or currently be a full time college or university undergraduate student entering college, technical school or university as a full time student in the 2018-2019 school year.
  • Applicant must be a Whatcom County Farm Bureau member or the son, daughter, legal dependent or spouse of a Whatcom County Farm Bureau member, with membership dues paid prior to October 1, 2017, and kept current through May 14, 2018.
  • Applicant must not have been awarded the scholarship in previous years.
  • Application must be completed and postmarked or emailed by Monday, April 30, 2018 to: Whatcom Farm Bureau Scholarship Committee, PO Box 703, Lynden, WA 98264 Or whatcomfarmbureau@gmail.com

Judging is scored as follows:

  • Academics/Transcript 20
  • The Importance of Farm Bureau – Essay 40
  • Career Ambition – Essay 20
  • Leadership & Community Service – Essay 20

The Whatcom County Farm Bureau Scholarship Committee will review the applications and make the final decision no later than May 14, 2018.

Scholarship payment will be made after one full term has been successfully completed with a GPA of 2.75 or better, and the recipient is enrolled full time for the next term. Prior to scholarship payment, recipient is responsible for having a copy of grades and a letter of re-enrollment sent from the college registrar to:

Whatcom County Farm Bureau Scholarship Committee PO Box 703, Lynden, WA 98264 Or whatcomfarmbureau@gmail.com

For questions or further information, please contact:

Troy Lenssen, Whatcom County Farm Bureau Scholarship Chairperson
360-815-2577 troylenssen@hotmail.com

Melodie Kirk, Whatcom County Farm Bureau Administrative Staff
360-739-7764 whatcomfarmbureau@gmail.com

Click here for the application!

Statement on Growth Management Act Appeal

LYNDEN, Wash.–Whatcom County farming groups are pushing back after the Whatcom County Council ignored state law and the County Comprehensive Plan’s goals and policies that require local family farms, food, and resource lands to be protected on the same level as the environment.

The Whatcom County Farm Bureau, Washington Farm Bureau, Whatcom County Cattlemen’s Association and Whatcom Family Farmers are appealing an updated set of farm regulations to the Washington State Growth Management Hearings Board (GMHB), after the council approved a Critical Areas Ordinance (CAO) that violates the Washington Growth Management Act (GMA) by failing to protect local food and farms.

“This ill-conceived update to important Whatcom County environmental protections must be corrected to comply with the GMA and protect the interests of local food and farming and provide environmental safeguards before being placed into effect,” said Leslie Honcoop, local farmer and president of the Whatcom County Farm Bureau.

The GMA requires counties to encourage the protection and enhancement of agricultural resource lands, the economic development of farmland, the protection of farmland owners’ property rights, and the protection of those owners from illegal public disclosure requirements.

Whatcom County’s updated CAO fails all of these tests, as well as others outlined in the GMA and Comprehensive Plan.

“By neglecting to take these important considerations into account, the Whatcom County Council has enacted rules that place our local agricultural community at risk of further negative economic pressures and costs of complying with unnecessary mandates that do little to protect the environment on and around farmland that local farmers work so hard to steward,” Honcoop said.

Those who crafted the GMA knew that taking away farms’ ability to be economically viable would only serve to encourage the conversion of agricultural resource lands (sprawl) and ultimately speed the urbanization of our already dwindling farmlands and rural areas.

The farming and ranching groups involved in the appeal are calling for the updated Whatcom County CAO to be brought back to the drawing board to address these major problems.

It is imperative that the GMHB invalidate the updated CAO, so that Whatcom County environmental regulations can be corrected to comply with the GMA and the Comprehensive Plan and protect the interests of local food and farming on par with the environment.

Don’t Miss Requesting A Ballot To Vote Larry Helm

The Whatcom Conservation District Board of Supervisors is having an election where all Whatcom County voters are eligible to vote. The catch is that unlike our normal elections which are run out the Whatcom County Auditor’s office, this election is run out of the Whatcom Conservation District office and you must request an absentee ballot or vote in person on election day, March 13, 2018, at the Conservation District office.

Because this elected position impacts agriculture in Whatcom County, we strongly encourage you to request a ballot to vote. You may do this by calling 360-526- 2381 ext 101 or visiting whatcomcd.org/board-elections. The deadline for requesting a ballot is 4:00 pm tomorrow, the 7th of February.

The Washington State Farm Bureau PAC has endorsed Larry Helm for this position. Larry is a farmer here in Whatcom County and has served on this board previously. He is an excellent fit for this position. To learn more about Larry Helm visit his campaign page at facebook.com/LarryHelm4ConservationDistrict/

If you have not already done so, please request a ballot by tomorrow afternoon. It is crucial for Agriculture to continue to have Larry Helm on this board.