Mayor Leavitt Sort of Apologizes for “Pandering” Allegation

by lewwaters

Once again, Vancouver, Washington’s Mayor, Tim Leavitt found himself in hot water with the citizens of Vancouver over words he carelessly spoke. Unlike his flip/flop over supporting citizens in opposing tolling of the Columbia River Crossing boondoggle, this time he took a direct slap towards a fellow council member who did side with the citizens, Jeanne Stewart.

Citizens Turn Out To Defend Council Woman Jeanne Stewart

Some citizens, displeased with Leavitt’s comment and allegation that appeared in the Columbian here and here emailed city manager Eric Holmes calling for an ethics investigation against Mayor Leavitt.

Last evening, obviously fully aware of those calls, since mine and at least one other were copied to the Mayor, Tim Levitt, sort of issued an apology.

I say sort of because, as you can see, his words were not direct and were issued more in a general manner when anyone reading the Columbian and indeed the Columbian itself saw clear as day who he was referring to with his “pandering” comment.

To her credit, Jeanne Stewart, after trying to clarify the apology was indeed meant for her, graciously accepted it and called for this to end the matter, saving the Mayor from an ethics investigation.

Also of note, council woman Jeanne Harris of ‘Gavel Down’ fame, bewilderment of the comment or the discussion of it on Victoria Taft’s program. Harris was present when 4 citizens stood up in defense of Ms. Stewart and didn’t ask what they were speaking of then, if she were listening.

Then again, maybe just like Mayor Leavitt, she too doesn’t read the Columbian very much.

April 28, 2011 was the date I sent my email complaint to city manager Eric Holmes. Today, 6 days later I received the following from him,

Mr. Waters –

Thank you for your inquiry.

During last night’s Council meeting (May 2), Mayor Leavitt offered an apology to Councilor Stewart for the use of the word “pander” in his remarks recently quoted in the Columbian. Councilor Stewart accepted his apology and the rest of the City council indicated a consensus that Mayor Leavitt’s apology sufficiently addresses the issue.

With that, the matter is considered closed.

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Best regards –

Eric J. Holmes | City Manager

P.O. Box 1995 • Vancouver, WA 98668-1995

P: 360.487.8640 | F: 360.487.8625

Yes, the matter is now closed, thanks to Jeanne Stewart taking the high road and graciously accepting Mr. Leavitt’s apology.

Citizens are watching now, Mayor.

4 Comments to “Mayor Leavitt Sort of Apologizes for “Pandering” Allegation”

  1. Thank you for the updates on the latest Vancouver Council antics.
    Jeanne Stewart is the kind of city councilor that serves citizens faithfully. Since about 1998 or so, I’ve observed her on the council as one who reliably and respectfully considers citizen input. For example, when FVRL libraries distributed hardcore computer porn to and near minors, Jeanne Stewart responded to citizen concerns and alone spoke up in support of decent public libraries. (Leavitt, Smith, Harris and Burkman were all on the Vancouver City Council at the time and either defended the practice or kept mum)
    Stewart does her homework, brings solid input , and serves the public interest. The rest of the council is often hostile to Stewart as well as citizens that have a different point a view.
    What a shame . Glad to see Bill Turlay plans to run for the Vancouver Council as he has the experience, integrity and ability to serve citizens well. Citizens need more allies in local government, not dictators who won’t tolerate dissent.


  2. Something has to be done with the current city council members. We have gotten to the point where apologies alone are not sufficient.

    Looking back we had Pat Campbell apologize for calling out Former City manager for maing a Liar out of him, then we had Gavel Down Harris order me to stop speaking. Nex we had Gavel Down Harris, Scream at David Madore and Steve Herman. Then we had the City Council Violate the City Charter and Vancouver municipal code on numerous ocassions.

    First a 46 million dollar sweetheart deal with the waste water treatment, than another with the printing of city materials, and don’t forget changing citizens communications without the benefit of a public meeting. And lets not forget the frequent and not too suttle attempts to silence us.

    AI guess all we can do if they continue to ignore the rules we will have to figure out some way to get them out of office. Because we do deserve to be represented not dictated to.

    And so it goes

    Larry Patella
    CDR USN (ret)


  3. We need to clean house, that’s for sure. The city council is a bunch of arrogant jerks.


  4. It’s an uphill battle getting our message out because the majority of citizens don’t even know what’s happening. They might read an article but come election time they forget what has happened in the past. We have a lot of hard work ahead.


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