by lewwaters

Submitted by reader;

Jack Burkman’s narrow margin of less than 7% against his opponent, Bill Turlay is not a voter mandate to “ Bring Jack Back”.

Let’s examine Jack’s tax and spend voting record.

Jack’s vote contributed to our current city debt of $212 Million with debt interest payment at $10 Million per year.

Jack’s voted for SIX (6) downtown parking garages with a LOSS of revenue of $280,000 in 2008; Hilton hotel construction $ 72.5 million with $1 Million per year in debt interest payment and $800,00/yr Hilton management fee. Also Jack voted for a TEN-year property tax break for downtown Heritage condo owners.

Jack’s campaign brochure states he will wisely manage our community’s funds. If Jack really managed funds well during his years in office, why have Police and Fire always been used as the pawn to extract more taxes out of the public’s pocket?

Jack’s campaign brochure also states he wants to keep our city safe and secure. Where was Jack’s concern about safety for library patrons when he served simultaneously as a Vancouver Library board member and City council member? Jack consistently voted to keep unfiltered porn in the library, even after the Mayor recommended library board members filter out porn.

Jack’s voting record shows he voted in lockstep with the mayor and never showed any independent thinking of his own. Can you imagine, two years and never finding any issue with which you disagree with anyone else on the council? Is this leadership?

During his time on council Jack demonstrated his inability to interface with the citizens and showed contempt for citizens when they voiced their disapproval on certain issues. Jack had the audacity to say to a constituent – “you are not smart enough to understand how to run the city”. After a public forum at a local school in April 2000, Jack wrote part of a letter to The Columbian where he pitched a fit at the questions being asked by citizens. Now, he wants us to believe he is a thoughtful leader who brings people together (as stated in his campaign brochure)?

Sooner or later the real “Jack” will show up and the voters will realize they have reelected the same Jack who did not serve them well the first time on City council.

Fran Rutherford
Vancouver, Wa.


  1. Mrs. Rutherford,

    I’m disappointed to see that you feel the need to make up facts to support your beliefs.

    Here are the real facts:

    I was not on Council when the Hilton was approved. I was on Council when the sports arena/convention center was proposed. And I was the only Council member asking the hard questions – check the Columbian articles from that time (“Only Burkman has shown any inclination to ask tough questions, to challenge city officials”). I refused to support the project until I was shown a financial project that worked and was based on reasonable assumptions, such as attendance and usage, and that the partners were financially stable. That project was never approved and I never gave it my support. The Hilton project was proposed after I left Council.

    I was never on both the City Council and Library Board at the same time. I finished my Council term on Dec 31, 2001 and joined the Library Board in 2003.

    The library policy of no viewing of internet filtering, and the subsequent use of filters to implement the policy occurred because of my leadership – check the Columbian articles at that time. I not only led the change, I certainly voted for the change. And I took this action while running for Legislature. Many Democrats walked away from my campaign and voted against me because of my role and actions. It likely cost me the election, but I am willing to take the consequences of doing the right thing.

    I encourage you to look at past Columbian articles that contain my name. Along with many articles stating my positions on the convention center, you will find I, with Moeller, called for a moratorium on Mill Plain – definitely a position not supported by anyone else on Council. You’ll see the article that quoted me saying I wouldn’t take the Council salary increase – the only Councilmember to do that. There are numerous other examples.

    I never said, “You are not smart enough to understand how to run a city.” or anything like that to anyone. I don’t talk to people that way – ever.


  2. I video taped the meeting that Mrs Rutherford refered to. Larry Smith was standing by me during the taping. The tape in in storage in Vancouver. I will gladly make it public on my next trip to Vancouver.

    I worked hard to get Jack elected the first time because he was from Cascade Park and I worked even harder to get him defeated. It is a shame that he is once again in office.

    Vancouver needs more people like Mrs Rutherford.


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