Here’s a guy who’s found a bright side to last Thursday’s bomb scare at the Chelan County courthouse.
Elgin Shaw, who as campus security deputy keeps the courthouse and its denizens safe, said the emergency evacuation of the multi-floored complex was the first real, live test of a two-year-old system funded by a grant from Department of Homeland Security.
“It worked pretty well,” said Shaw. “The emergency recording kicked in and people took it seriously. They left the building in an orderly way, and did it fairly quickly.”
Sure enough, the recording’s very authoritative horn — rrrr! rrrr! rrrr! — and message for folks to move their butts out the building sent scores of employees and visitors to nearby sidewalks and the grounds of Memorial Park.
That evacuation allowed Shaw and his crew to do a quick, preliminary scan of all of the buildings’ floors for lingering employees and suspicious devices. No bombs were found.
OK, there were a couple of glitches, he admitted. In addition to the recording, some emergency lights were supposed to flash and didn’t. “We’ll be checking on why the lights didn’t work,” Shaw said.
And, as with most evacuation plans, employees are supposed to report to assigned safety areas so there can be a head count to make sure everyone’s safe. On Thursday, they mostly poured into the park and scattered over the grounds. Some visited the library and others wandered over to Bella Bistro for coffee.
“We’ve got to work on that,” said Shaw. “Right now, I’m just glad that everyone left the building as they were supposed to, that everyone was safe.”
Who’s the real winner?
Turns out, Gary Schoessler’s luck at bingo wasn’t any better than his luck on the ballot against Chelan County Commissioner Ron Walter on election night.
Schoessler said he went to the Wenatchee Buzz Inn with some friends, and ended up in the bingo games while national and state election results were broadcast on television. He kept track of his own returns on his smart phone.
“It wasn’t one of my lucky nights,” Schoessler quipped. Then again — with the notable exception of Mike Armstrong — most of the incumbents were reelected, he noted.
But voters aren’t always so loyal to those in office. “I figure Cary Condotta will be up for election in two years. Maybe I’ll have some fun with him,” he added.
The Worm caught Schoessler on Thursday afternoon on his smart phone, sitting at the river fishing for steelhead. Makes you wonder who the real winner was.
Republican exodus? The very day after Mitt Romney and Rob McKenna lost their elections, Republican supporters were seen clearing out signs and other election memorabelia from the Republic Headquarters in downtown Wenatchee. At the same time, building materials were being hauled into the building.
No one actually takes down election signs the next day, do they? So were Republicans really that disenchanted with their candidates to remove all evidence of their support so quickly?
No, says Fredi Simpson, who chairs the local Republican Party.
Simpson says Localtel actually owns the building; Republicans were only renting it. They’re completely renovating the entire building. Localtel rennovated half of the building, and were waiting to work on the other half until Nov. 7, when the election was over. Win or lose, the Republicans were moving.
“We promised we would be out the day after the election,” Simpson said, adding, “We kept our promise.”
This week’s Worm was compiled by reporter K.C. Mehaffey and Mike Irwin. Got a tip? Email firstname.lastname@example.org