Big Stu: Full time commissioner, on-call bouncer

Tom Mielke may be the chairman of the Board of Clark County Commissioners, but he’s not the muscle.

That title apparently belongs to 6-foot-5 Steve Stuart, who is taller than Mielke and Marc Boldt and the only Gen Xer on the board.

During the public comment portion of Tuesday’s meeting, David Rogers of Yacolt was criticizing the commissioners for the way the county has handled alleged violations by the operators of a gravel mining pit.

The commissioners have a five-minute rule and a blinking light tells speakers when to wrap up, but Mielke never abruptly cuts people off.

“I need you to wrap up,” Mielke told Rogers once Rogers hit the seven-minute mark.

“I’ll tell you when I’m done,” Rogers said.

“No. No, sir,” Mielke said.

“Mr. Stuart, can you remove me?” Rogers asked.

Since speakers typically address the chairman, who runs the meetings, Stuart looked surprised.

“It’s actually Mr. Mielke’s — you’re asking me to remove you?” Stuart asked.

“If you want,” Rogers said.

Stuart laughed.

“I don’t want to remove you,” he said.

“We don’t want to go there,” Mielke said. “We just ask you respect our time limit so someone else can speak.”

The next speaker, Howard Jones of Yacolt, was there to also talk about the Storedahl mining operation.

Jones is taller than Rogers.

“I’m not going to pull you out of here either, I’m going to be honest,” joked Stuart.

“I’m not going to ‘gavel down’ either,” Mielke said.

Of course Stuart wears suits to meetings, but, as pictured here in casual wear, he could pass for a bouncer.


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