Posts tagged ‘Jack Burkman’

October 16, 2013

Stewart and Doan for City Council

by lewwaters

Vote 1Voters in Vancouver Washington have another opportunity to restore the city or just allow it to the slide into obscurity. You are facing another off-year election where a majority of voters don’t bother to vote, seeing no candidates for national office running.

Unfortunately, those that decline to vote this time hurt themselves more since these off year elections are when many local offices are filled with incumbents or replaced with new people.

The Mayor of Vancouver race has already been covered, but three seats on the city council are up this time and if you are fed up with being ignored, silenced or disrespected, this is an important election for you. You can change how the city has been going.

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July 24, 2013

Election 2013: Vancouver City Council Pos. 1

by lewwaters

Vote 1Continuing in my assessment of Vancouver, Washington City Council candidates in the 2013 election, the final race is Position 1, currently held by Jack Burkman who is being challenged by Otto M. Guardado, Micheline Doan and Brian Joseph Smith.

For some reason unknown to me, the Position 1 race has not risen to the level of attention that has been directed at the other two seats being challenged, but is just as important on the 7-member city council.

Again, in no particular order of preference;

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April 30, 2013

As the Columbian Squirms

by lewwaters

Monkey, EmbarrassedIt is well known now that the CRC is a very unpopular project among citizens and many business owners. We know it, elected officials know it and of course, even though they try to deny it, the Columbian knows it.

We also know the Columbian is in the tank for the light rail project and instead of investigating numerous concerns reported over the years about the CRC, will run damage control trying to minimize those concerns.

They also have shown themselves unfriendly towards candidates running for office that openly oppose the CRC light rail project and many can attest, do not treat those candidates very equitably, digging up dirt, casting aspersions and opposing just about any candidate who runs against the CRC.

And yet, the Columbian was puzzled when some candidates began bypassing them during campaigns, seeking other outlets to reach voters.

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August 14, 2012

Public Safety Band-Aid Fix Coming Loose

by lewwaters

As the Vancouver City Council unanimously approved acceptance of a $2.3 Million SAFER Grant to reopen Fire Station 6, almost exactly one year ago, council member Jack Burkman was quoted, “We’ve wounded a neighborhood and now we need a Band-Aid” as he referred to the city as using a “broken business model.”

Fire Station 6 had been closed for much of 2011 due to budgeting problems in the city.

Other city council members applauded accepting the grant while reminding all of it gives the city a “temporary fix” and two years to work out a permanent solution.

Crews were hired and trained and the station was reopened on November 7, 2011 to a jubilant neighborhood, just in time for the November 8, 2011 elections where three Vancouver City Council members were up for reelection.

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July 6, 2012

City Council Member Harris Goes Ballistic on Columbian Reporter

by lewwaters

Vancouver City Council member Jeanne Harris, known worldwide for her “Gavel Down” meltdown is a gift to bloggers and reporters. She just doesn’t know when to quit.

We recently saw about her filing a $500K claim for an eye injury against the city of Ridgefield in the Columbian with this blog breaking the news that she was photographed wielding a pugil stick at a charity boxing match 2 months after she alleges the injury occurred here.

As if that wasn’t bad enough, she has now left an angry, profanity laced voicemail message for Columbian reporter, Andrea Damewood, who wrote the initial story

STRONG LANGUAGE WARNING

What can be said except WOW!

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November 15, 2011

In Case You Wonder Why We Are Going Broke

by lewwaters

Our state accountants are completing their final work on the states books and in spite of so called “deep cuts” the governor said we had, it looks like the last two year budget written and passed will close about $90 million in the red.

This ongoing “Great Recession” government keeps us locked in shows no signs of relenting and apparently, no one in government knows or has the guts to do what is actually needed to get us back out.

Instead, we see more money poured into the Columbia River Crossing Project, hopes of an admissions tax to bring a marginal class A baseball team to town complete with a sparkling new stadium, paid in part with more of our tax dollars all while we had to beg to the federal government for a temporary grant to reopen an staff Fire Station 6, recently closed because there is no money to keep it open.

If you want to know why we keep going broke and why I have long called on ousting Democrats at all levels, we need look no further than a recent action taken by the Vancouver city council, Vancouver approves $600K contract to build waterfront park, especially to comments made below the article by current city council member, Jack Burkman.

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July 26, 2011

Show The Yakima Bears the Door

by lewwaters

[Updated to reflect a major correction by the Columbian in who owns the stadium]

[Update 2: More on specific ownership of the stadium from Stephanie Rice added]

Vancouver’s city council got their first formal presentation for the Class A ball Team, Yakima Bears planned move to Vancouver. All council members except Pat Campbell have given City Manager “Erik Holmes the OK to research the issue and engage in potential discussions with Clark County” for adding a 5% entertainment tax throughout the county pay for construction of a $23 Million stadium adjacent to Clark College.

The Columbian

There are several pros & cons to relocating a Class A ball team to Vancouver, a large con being that 5% entertainment tax added to movie tickets, golf courses and several other forms of entertainment.

Although Clark County taxpayers will be on the hook for 70% of the costs of the proposed stadium, we were told “the stadium would be owned and maintained by Short Season LLC.” Stephanie Rice, the writer of the article posted this morning, “Key correction: the sentence should read (and now does) ‘the stadium would be publicly owned but maintained by Short Season LLC’.”

UPDATE 2: Comment from Stephanie Rice, “Lew, to be even more specific, the team would own it while the debt was being repaid, then it would be publicly owned. Here’s what I was told by the team when I asked why in documents it says the team would own it: ‘Ownership is during the period in which the facility is indebted. It secures the asset until the debt is retired. Then it is free and clear a public facility’.”

City council members Larry Smith and Jack Burkman asked to hear alternatives to the entertainment tax and were told of none.

Asked why taxpayers should pay for the stadium, Mike Thiessen of Short Season LLC said that “the team would be putting up 30 percent of the construction costs for a stadium it would use 13 percent of the time.”

That’s not exactly reassuring.

I have kept an open mind on this proposal, even though voicing concerns over its location next to the Vancouver Campus of the Veterans Hospital, but reading “After the workshop, co-owner K.L. Wombacher said the team does have alternate plans, but they don’t involve the city of Vancouver seals it for me.

It’s time to close the books and show these people the door.

We do not need to be threatened into coughing up tax dollars for a new stadium to be owned by a private enterprise “at a time when public services are being cut, a fire station closed, federal grants used to keep cops on the street and the city lacks money to fill all its potholes,” as expressed by Tim Leavitt’s former campaign manager, Temple Lentz as she “questioned the rationality of raising a tax for a stadium.”

Ms. Lentz expressed, “The terms political will and vision were used as qualities to make this happen. But giving $20 million of other people’s money to the first guy who comes up and asks for it is not political will or vision.”

May 17, 2011

Giving Jack Burkman Credit When It Is Due

by lewwaters

As critical as I often am of council members, I also enjoy giving credit to them when I feel it is due. Such is the case with council member Jack Burkman for taking his time at last evenings city council meeting to address the issue of the proposed acquisition of the Yakima Bears and the proposal of a brand new stadium built adjacent to Clark College to be financed in part by an entertainment tax on nearly all admissions tickets throughout the county.

Mr. Burkman mentions some of the concerns many in the community have, especially the haste being put on a commitment for this to move forward.

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March 22, 2011

Portcouver Mayor, Council Members ‘Irked’ Over Public Records Request

by lewwaters

The ongoing saga of Vancouver City Council versus the citizens of Vancouver was elevated up a few notches with a request made under Washington Public Records Law.

The Zero Reports;

“Members of the Vancouver City Council, six of them the subject of a public records request for months of email correspondence, lamented the wide net cast by the request and the cost of the request to the city at a council meeting Monday.”

“Mitch Copp of Vancouver filed two public disclosure requests with the city earlier this year. The first, filed in January, asks for all of Mayor Tim Leavitt and Councilman Jack Burkman’s email correspondence from June 1 to Jan. 11. The second, filed in March, asks for email correspondence for council members Larry Smith, Jeanne Harris, Pat Campbell and Bart Hansen.”

“The number of documents we’re talking about can number in the tens of thousands, and every one of those documents has to be read by somebody to determine whether it’s disclosable or not,” Vancouver City Manager Eric Holmes said. “We will be responsible to those to fulfill our responsibility under the statute, but it is a pretty substantial burden on our staff resources.”

Leavitt, still licking his chops over successfully modifying citizens speaking rights before the ruling class said, “It’s going to cause a use of city dollars and resources we could otherwise be putting out on the streets in the form of police officers and firefighters.”

This from the same Mayor who doesn’t have a problem hanging the albatross of the Columbia River Crossing Project, including Portland’s financially failing Loot Rail around future generations necks.

Perhaps he shouldn’t have lied to voters on opposing tolls to be elected Mayor.

March 8, 2011

Council Member Stewart “Gavels Down” Fellow Council Members

by lewwaters

UPDATE: Added Ms. Stewarts apology to council member Smith for interrupting him

I’m really sorry I missed last evenings Vancouver, Washington City Council Meeting. Had I been present, I would not have been able to contain myself and would have applauded council member Jeanne Stewart for her dressing down of fellow council members for now discussing favorably the very policy they ousted her from the C-Trans board because of her voting for it just weeks ago.

I have to add here that I have come to respect Larry Smith quite a bit over his work with various Veterans’ issues and look forward to working with him in the future. But when I feel he is wrong, I have to state so. And, I feel his and the rest of the council’s decision to cut Ms. Stewart from the board was very wrong.

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March 3, 2011

Citizen to City Council Member Burkman: Civility

by lewwaters

As was previously posted here, Monday evening, February 28, 2011 saw Vancouver city council member Jeanne ‘Gavel Down’ Harris once again confront successful Vancouver businessman David Madore. This time however, instead of berating Mr. Madore, she, acting as contrite as she is capable, placed blame for the subsequent negativity associated with her previous meltdown on Mr. Madore, asking him to please remove the video of her now internationally famous “Gavel Down” incident.

As council meeting was wrapping up, council member Jack Burkman, for whatever reason decided to publicly add his two cents and admonish Mr. Madore as well.

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March 1, 2011

Council Member Burkman is ‘Disappointed’ in Mr. Madore

by lewwaters

This blog no longer supports David Madore and calls upon him to resign immediately!

Continuing the Madoreophobia seen in Clark County Washington, city council member Jack Burkman, after clearing up some information on previous employment, expresses his “disappointment” that a video of Jeanne Harris and her now famous “Gavel Down” moment was captured on video at a public event and has been made available on the internet.

CVTV footage, obtained pursuant to the Public Disclosure Act, in no way is intended by CVTV, the City of Vancouver, or Clark County to either promote or oppose any candidate for public office or any ballot proposition

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January 11, 2011

Vancouver City Council ‘Gavels Down’ Council Member Stewart

by lewwaters

Listen to Jeanne Stewart on KPAM 860 Victoria Taft Program HERE.

Represent the “will of the people” over the “will of the council” in Vancouver, Washington seems to carry with it grave repercussions today. In expressing their displeasure that council member Jeanne Stewart sided with the citizens and taxpayers of the city of Vancouver, Washington, fellow council members decided to remove Ms. Stewart from the C-Trans board for a vote cast months ago on separating a ballot vote on funding ‘Loot’ Rail from funding C-Trans itself.

Having the audacity to represent the people, a position apparently we mistakenly believe we elect these people to do, Jeanne Stewart was removed from the C-Trans Board Monday evening, January 10, 2011.

Pat Campbell is who called for her removal, described in the Columbian as “calling for Stewart to be yanked from C-Tran.” They quote Campbell as saying,

“I object to Ms. Stewart continuing on that [C-Trans Board]. She told us she wasn’t going to represent council wishes on a vote back in the fall … the person that we appoint should be someone that represents council and doesn’t tell council that they’re going to represent themselves.”

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September 30, 2010

Panel to Recommend Harris Receive Reprimand, Removal from Boards

by lewwaters

In a meeting lasting almost an hour, 3 Vancouver council members settled on a recommendation of fellow council member Jeanne Harris, receive a letter of reprimand and be removed from all boards she currently sits on, representing the city council and that they appointed her to, for her disrespectful behavior displayed September 13, 2010. VIDEO

Boards she sits on where she received a gubernatorial appointment (CRC) are not affected as it was felt they are outside the scope of the city council.

It was determined early on, with advice from city attorney Ted Gathe, that Harris’ disrespectful interaction with citizens is not covered by the current ethics policy. Councilman Burkman recommended council revisit it to update the ethics policy to include how members of the public are treated.

Council members stated they felt her actions the evening of September 13 were “demeaning,” “disturbing” and “highly inappropriate,” towards Mayor Leavitt and Council member Jeanne E. Stewart.

Removal from office was also ruled out early as the threshold for such action was not met, Gathe advised. He stated to reach that high threshold would take something along the lines of committing an actual crime.

The panel broke it down to 4 areas of concern, 1: Her conduct towards the public, which is not addressed by current policy. 2: Her conduct towards Jeanne Stewart during the meeting deemed inappropriate. 3: Her interference with the Mayors duty in conducting the meeting deemed inappropriate. 4: Her confrontation with Jeanne Stewart after the meeting also deemed inappropriate.

Discussion fell onto whether she should receive a letter of reprimand or a censure and it was determined there was not a lot of difference between the two. A letter of reprimand was deemed appropriate. Mayor Pro Tem Larry Smith stated he wanted more than just a “slap on the wrist” and Pat Campbell added he too wanted to give the letter “some teeth” behind it.

Jack Burkman said there few sanctions available they could use and then it was decided they would recommend she be removed from all boards she was appointed to by the council until she is up for reelection in 2013.

If the full council votes to accept the panel’s recommendation, it would be effective immediately.

Pat Campbell added that citizens should “stay tuned” and follow her for when she is up for reelection, as he felt that her conduct is not a matter for recall.

The panel hopes to wrap it up at the October 11 council meeting.

The Columbian’s Andrea Damewood published her take HERE with more to come in Friday’s paper.

KGW TV adds quotes from citizens present.

“They’re going to smack her on the hand, she’s going to turn around and walk away,” said Stephanie Turlay. “They will not stand up and do what really needs to be done.”

“She needs to go,” said Josephine Wentzel. “If she doesn’t resign she needs to be taken out, we need to recall her.”

September 15, 2010

Two Council Members Lodge Ethics Complaint Against Council Member Jeanne Harris

by lewwaters

After attending the C-Trans Board Meeting the evening of September 14, I returned home to find in my email a notice from the City of Vancouver that stated, “Vancouver City Council asked to establish Ethics Committee to review complaint regarding Councilmember Conduct.” Clicking on the link I saw that two Vancouver City Council Members, Larry Smith and Jack Burkman sent an email to Mayor Tim Leavitt asking for him to convene an ethics panel to investigate the outrageous conduct displayed by Council Member Jeanne Harris at Monday’s Council Meeting.

Jeanne Harris Throws Yet Another Tantrum, Must Go

The email sent to the Mayor said,

“From: Burkman, Jack
Sent: Tuesday, September 14, 2010 2:07 PM
To: Campbell, Pat; Hansen, Bart; Harris, Jeanne; Leavitt, Tim; Smith, Larry; Stewart, Jeanne; Burkman, Jack
Cc: McDonnell, Pat
Subject: Ethics violation complaint

September 14, 2010

Mayor and Council,

We believe a violation of the Vancouver City Council Code of Ethics has occurred. Section 6.0A of the Ethics Code, Standards of Conduct Mission, states that “Council Members will at all times treat each other with respect and dignity.”

Councilmember Jeanne Harris’ actions toward fellow Councilmember Jeanne Stewart and Mayor Tim Leavitt at last night’s meeting were not respectful and did not treat them with dignity.

We respectfully request that an Ethics Committee be established at the next regular Council meeting, per Section 7.0 of the City Council Code of Ethics policy to investigate these allegations and determine action that should be taken.

Councilmember Jack Burkman
Councilmember Larry Smith”

Assuming this to be a sincere attempt to rein in an out of control council member and not just a CYA measure, I applaud both council members Burkman and Smith for stepping up after their silence during Monday evenings meeting.

I notice that the email was sent after KPAM 860’s Victoria Taft had been discussing the meeting as somewhat of a “donnybrook” due to Harris’ behavior and lambasting of citizens during the Citizen Communication segment of the meeting and for her verbal attacks against fellow council member Jeanne Stewart, during and after the meeting.

I also find it somewhat hypocritical to hear both Harris and Mayor Leavitt admonish citizens who speak against adding tolls to the proposed I-5 replacement Bridge and who oppose Light Rail being added from Portland. I say hypocritical as during the August 16 council meeting, citizens speaking in favor of the two were politely listened to and engaged by council members as to the benefits of Light Rail.

At the Sept. 13 meeting, Harris and Leavitt admonished speakers who spoke in opposition with the claim that it is not city business and the council has no say in the matter, even though at the C-Trans Board meeting, 3 city council members sit on that board and not only give input but vote on C-Trans matters, including the bridge and light rail.

Additionally, as stated in a Columbian article on the vote to separate a vote of the C-Trans budget and light rail, an effort was made by Mayor Leavitt to replace council member Stewart on the C-Trans Board as she was not speaking in unison on the vote with Harris and Leavitt.

From the Columbian article Fate of light rail will go before voters we read,

“Just a day before, a majority of the Vancouver City Council had pressed for the city’s three representatives — Leavitt, Harris and councilor Jeanne Stewart — to exercise their ability to form a bloc veto against two ballot measures supported by the majority of C-Tran’s nine-member board. But Stewart made it clear that she wasn’t going to go along with Leavitt and Harris, saying she worried that a voter backlash against light rail could force the transit agency to make draconian cuts in basic bus service.”

“Leavitt on Monday had vowed to replace Stewart on the C-Tran board with Councilor Larry Smith.”

“By Tuesday, however, that gambit flickered out when it became apparent that C-Tran’s bylaws didn’t allow Stewart to be summarily swept off the board against her will. Stewart then voted with six other C-Tran board members to begin the process of formulating two ballot measures rather than just one.”

If light rail coming into Vancouver isn’t city business, why then are 3 council members sitting on the C-Trans Board and voting on it? Why the effort to replace council member Stewart in order to sway the Board towards the desired outcome of Mayor Leavitt and Council Member Harris?

Perhaps that ethics complaint lodged against Jeanne Harris should include Mayor Tim Leavitt as well.

John Jenkins, candidate for Vancouver City Council, running against Council Member Bart Hansen spoke at the C-Trans Board Meeting last evening asking for an inquiry into Jeanne Harris’ conduct and for her removal from her vice-chair duties on the Board with the possibility of her complete removal from the C-Trans Board.

As I continue to say, we citizens deserve better representation from elected officials than this. They work for us, not the other way around and we do not elect them to run rough shod over us or limit our free speech. Nor do we elect them to ram unwanted and overly expensive programs down our throats when we can barely afford to feed our families.

This ethics complaint is a good beginning, provided it is sincere.

Only time will tell what, if any, action is taken against Council Member Jeanne Harris.

UPDATE: Vancouver City Council Ethics Panel Decision HERE

November 6, 2009

VOTERS WANTED JACK BACK?

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.

October 21, 2009

VANCOUVER COUNCIL CANDIDATE BURKMAN’S ERRONEOUS PUBLIC STATEMENTS

by lewwaters

Received in email and posted by request,

Candidate Burkman has made several erroneous public statements as judged by his voting record when he was previously on council. Burkman’s voting record demonstrates an inability to break with the council majority.

Sure he kept the city safe and secure when he voted for a contract to have city police assigned to patroling the condos across the street from Esther Short Park at taxpayers expense.

Burkman voted to sell two city blocks to a former mayor’s family member for $75,000 per block, in order to build these condos. Was this truly a great fiscal decision by candidate Burkman?

On the subject of creating better and more jobs, candidate Burkman needs to answer how many “actual” prevailing wage jobs materialized out of the wheeling and dealing that is going on in the downtown Vancouver area now and during his previous time on council.

Burkman was and still is in lockstep agreement with the mentality that permeates a vision of turning downtown Vancouver into a 7-day, 24-hour play center to profit whom? Taxpayers have been requesting an answer to this question and thus far the majority of council members refuse to respond. Isn’t it time for candidate Burkman to step up to the plate?

In addition, if candidate Burkman really managed funds well during his years in office why were/are the police and firefighter departments being used as pawns in an attempt to create fear among taxpayers to extract more tax money from their pockets??

Public representatives must be held accountable for their “public statements, actions and votes.”

Your vote is powerful. Send a message to candidates who say one thing on the political platform then when elected do the opposite. In this case, Burkman’s voting record is clearly visible and that should speak to the voter louder than his soundbites.

Frances E. Rutherford
Vancouver, WA

Mr. Burkman is free to respond if he so chooses.

October 10, 2009

Bill Turlay Picks Up Two Key Endorsements

by lewwaters

Bill Turlay, running for Vancouver City Council against former council member Jack Burkman has gained two key endorsements in his quest, as noted in the following Press Release.

Bill Turlay, candidate for Vancouver City Council, Position 1, has announced two new endorsements today — The Vancouver Police Officers’ Guild and the Building Industry Association of Clark County, (BIA).

According to Mr. Turlay these endorsements are consistent with the cross section of our local community, who heartily approve of his position on a multitude of issues.

The Vancouver Police Officers’ Guild
Ryan Martin, President — 360.904.3652

Building Industry Association of Clark County, (BIA)
Mike Bomar, Political Affairs Director – 360.694.0933

Vancouver citizens, it is time for change in city government. Not only is the Mayor’s office in bad need of new ideas, so is the city council.

Although Jack Burkman has been away from the city for a number of years and the seat he once held on the council, is it really new and fresh ideas he would return with?

No, it would just be more of going back to the same.

Bill Turlay stands for new thoughts, responsible representation and getting Vancouver back on track.

Vote for Bill Turlay, Vancouver City Council Position 1.

September 21, 2009

VANCOUVER NEIGHBORHOOD ALLIANCE PRESENTS CITIZENS’ CANDIDATE FORUM

by lewwaters

VANCOUVER NEIGHBORHOOD ALLIANCE PRESENTS CITIZENS’ CANDIDATE FORUM

TO BE HELD AT THE WATER RESOURCE CENTER
4600 S E Columbia Way
September 29th at 6:30 pm – 9 pm

Moderator ~ Mike Bailey

PARTICIPATING WILL BE MAYORAL CANDIDATES:

ROYCE POLLARD
TIM LEAVITT

CITY COUNCIL:

POSITION # 1  ~  BILL TURLAY
                              JACK BURKMAN

POSITION # 2 ~ JEANNE STEWART
                             DAVID MICHAEL HEYWOOD

POSITION # 3 ~ JEANNE HARRIS
                             ANNE McENERNY-OGLE

Participate in a public forum giving each candidate the opportunity to present their position on topics related to our city through audience generated questions.

Vancouver Neighborhood Alliance is a recognized organization of Vancouver neighborhood associations.

FEEL FREE TO PRINT THE INVITATION AND CIRCULATE THROUGHOUT YOUR COMMUNITY.

The Vancouver Neighborhood Alliance has put forth a great deal of effort to bring candidates together for you to ask questions of and determine who best is suited to represent Vancouver in the upcoming November election. I hope you will likewise make the effort to attend, ask your questions and listen to the answers and be an informed voter.

Remember, we get the government we deserve with our votes.

September 20, 2009

Bill Turlay For Vancouver City Council

by lewwaters

Turlay - 1

Vancouver resident Bill Turlay is running for Vancouver City Council position 1 against former council member, Jack Burkman.

Bill will bring with him values learned along the way in his many years service to America as a Naval Aviator and some 30 years in business. His common sense voice and ideas will be a welcome addition to the city council to counter Vancouver’s downward spiral into economic morass.

Bill is well known for testimonies given before Vancouver’s city council and various legislative committees both in Oregon and Washington, giving him a well-rounded view of changes we must make in order to return Vancouver to sound financial footing.

A July 31 Columbian editorial took delight in denigrating Mr. Turlay and his conservative values accusing him of “pounding on the table” and “yelling at the TV screen.” Oddly, they called him “lackluster” then went on to speak of his “passion.”

They rightfully acknowledge that Bill is the only candidate to oppose extending light rail into Clark County from Portland, Oregon. Ignored was that at last vote, Clark County voters rejected light rail by a 2 to 1 margin, placing Bill in line with the majority of voters in Clark County.

Only Bill Turlay is pointing out that Light Rail is not feasible for Clark County at this time and that costs of building it and a replacement I-5 bridge as currently planned will unfairly saddle Clark County residents with the costs and fees through tolls. With Light Rail, not only would we pay for it, payment for the few riding it would go to Portland, not remain in Clark County.

The September 19, 2009 Columbian acknowledges the rightful concerns Bill has by quoting him in urging the Columbia River Crossing officials to compare costs of bridge designs being considered. Bill said, “We need to have some type of comparison of what we are paying for this beautiful new structure as opposed to a simple one that does the job.”

Bill obviously realizes that taxpayers do not have endlessly deep pockets to keep being tapped.

Bill is running against former council member, Jack Burkman who left 7 years ago over personal reasons no one could fault him for.

Still, that is 7 years off the council and while I applaud him for placing family above politics, you cannot just start back up where you left off 7 years ago in today’s charged and economic troubled climate.

In these tough economic times, we need voices that can be critical of proposed tax increases and unneeded tolls, not another who will just rubber stamp such proposals.

Turlay sees the importance of spending more time and money in supporting local small businesses rather than expending those efforts in wooing international businesses, our local small businesses being the backbone of our community.

In acknowledging his own “think outside the box” attitude, Bill says, “Vancouver voters need to elect council members who are averse to increasing city debt. We need to be working to attract new small businesses, retaining the small businesses we have, strive to reduce our citizen’s tax burden, and be actively engaged in responding to citizens’ concerns.”

Vancouver is currently nearly $250 Million in debt with no foreseeable way to repay that debt.

We need elected officials that are willing to put the brakes on out of control spending, borrowing and raising of taxes on an already over burdened taxpayer. We need representatives that will place us first over high profile international businesses who don’t really offer that many high paying jobs.

We need representatives with business experience who know how to balance a budget, make tough decisions and who have a sense of serving the country and its citizens.

Vancouver, who we need sitting on the city council is Bill Turlay.