Posts tagged ‘Jack Burkman’

June 25, 2015

Who Are The Real Culprits?

by lewwaters

Earlier in the month, the Lazy C saw fit to publish a series of Letters to the Editor condemning the actions of officials in killing off the CRC light rail project.

We read,

“Rep. Liz Pike, R-Camas, has burned any and all bridges when it comes to starting a new dialogue about the construction of a new Interstate 5 Bridge.”

“There is solid evidence that Rep. Liz Pike, R-Camas, worked hard to kill the Columbia River Crossing project because she was opposed to light rail coming into Vancouver.”

“The most important reason to build a new Columbia River bridge is safety. When the big earthquake strikes this area, the bridge will collapse and many people will die. An eastern bridge won’t help.”

read more »

August 3, 2014

Real Congestion Relief? Fuggedaboutit!

by lewwaters

Brancaccio FuggedaboutitNow that the plug has been pulled on the bloated CRC light rail project, it is very apparent that proponents of that boondoggle are going to oppose any and every suggestion to actually work towards easing congestion along the I-5 Corridor through Vancouver, out of pure, hateful spite.

Never mind that their darling light rail extension from Portland that commanded the project never enjoyed the support of Clark County citizens, it was light rail or nothing at all, evidence by the calls of “no light rail, no bridge” from several proponents.

Figg Engineering has now provided the community with a proposal for an East County Bridge , a proposal they drew up at no charge to taxpayers. Contrast that to the CRC light rail project that sucked over $200 Million away from taxpayers, leaving us with nothing to show for our money, just bitter memories of out of touch elected officials ignoring our voices and attempting to go against our desires.

read more »

July 9, 2014

Thank You Commissioner Mielke

by lewwaters

How nice to see at last night’s C-Tran Board of Fools Meeting, Commissioner Tom Mielke continued his long standing advocacy for citizens of Clark County.

Unfortunately, it appears that Bill Ganley, Jack Burkman, Tim ‘the Liar’ Leavitt, Ron Onslow, Anne McEnerny Ogle and Ed Barnes turned their backs on the citizens and approved a Bus Rapid Transit line to run down Fourth Plain Boulevard.

read more »

April 8, 2014

Updated: C-Tran Gang of Five Sells Out Voters….. Again.

by lewwaters

C-TranYes, some of the same five that screwed us last year in the rushed approval of the contract with Trimet voted for another rushed approval of Millions of our tax dollars to go for an unneeded Bus Rapid Transit System down Fourth Plain Blvd.  from Vancouver Mall to end somewhere in the vicinity of Clark College.

The original plan was to have BRT meet a light rail transit station at Clark College, but with light rail now dead, why do we need a multi-Billion dollar BRT System?

Tim Leavitt, Anne McEnerny-Ogle, Jack Burkman, Jim Irish, Steve Stuart (by phone) all voted to rush into yet another ill conceived plan that voters indicated they did not want just last year. You voted these crooks in, I didn’t.

read more »

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.

read more »

August 14, 2013

Tax Addicts: Worse Than Heroin and Meth Addicts

by lewwaters

Tax AddictJust last week the Lazy C treated us to a three-part series on the struggles of a couple addicted to drugs. Their jail time, their drug induced paranoia, in and out of treatment facilities, it was all spelled out in the series receiving both praise and condemnation from readers.

Greg Jayne, the new Editorial Page Editor lays it out in the column In Our View: Addiction Costs Us All as, “Yet while the fight against illicit drug use has been a source of debate for decades now, the human toll remains the most poignant aspect of the story.”

But, there is an addiction hurting citizens of Clark County Washington that is much worse than heroin or meth in my estimation, affecting every single struggling middle class taxpayer in the county and the city of Vancouver, frivolous spending by politicians.

read more »

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;

read more »

July 20, 2013

Agenda Bias in Lazy C’s City Council Endorsements

by lewwaters

Boris ColumbianThe Columbian, or the Lazy C as I prefer to label them due to their ineffectual, biased reporting when it comes to politics is once again letting their bias show in their choice of who they endorse in Vancouver City Council races, misleading voters into voting for more of the same is change.

In spite of their admonition of “Remember, endorsements are opinions, nothing more,” it is very clear that they desire to rebuild a strong pro-CRC city council, seeing how the voters have trended towards candidates who are more responsive to their concerns over blindly supporting the not as dead as we think CRC light rail project.

The election of David Madore and reelection of Tom Mielke to the Clark County Commission has sent a shockwave through the editors, reaching an insane level of desperation after they hired 17th district Republican state senator Don Benton to become Clark County’s director of environmental services. The carefully constructed empire built by the ‘downtown mafia’ and Identity Clark County was beginning to crumble.

read more »

June 4, 2013

Voters? We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Voters

by lewwaters

Pile Driver 1Either the fix is in or someone has been given the word that construction of a new bridge is likely a sure thing.

I received word today from a well connected source that a “worldwide mega-corporation” is making calls locally to ensure there will be 800 pile drivers on hand by fall of 2014 to “begin construction on a bridge across the Columbia River between Oregon and Washington.”

This has not been confirmed by an “official” but the source is very well connected to be included in inside information.

It is unknown if this is a move to just be ready in case the CRC is funded or if the go ahead has been given at the highest of levels to build it.

read more »

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.

read more »

January 12, 2013

GVCC’s Kelly Parker Attempting An End Run Around Voters

by lewwaters

Light Rail HellOnce again we witness efforts by the few in Southwest Washington to circumvent voters, ignore our votes and lobby funds the state does not have to forcibly ram Portland’s financially beleaguered light rail on us and into our community.

It is Kelly Parker, President/CEO Greater Vancouver Chamber of Commerce who has sent out an email soliciting signatures from selected business owners with the Greater Vancouver area to show support for the Columbia River Crossing Project and light rail, even though voters have clearly said we do not want it in proxy votes, such as the recent defeat of C-TRAN’s Proposition 1 to fund operations & maintenance by a sales tax increase.

Parker’s email bypassed numerous businesses, such as Acuity Group PLLC, a Forensic Accounting Firm in Vancouver hired to independently audit CRC’s books and that was met with foot dragging, a huge document dump, usually designed to confuse and overwhelm, lack of cooperation and even a lawsuit from a contractor to inhibit access to some documents that might show where some $160 Million of our tax dollars has gone, seemingly targeted to those few who may profit from the project or who would merely pass along any expense to taxpayers, already bearing the brunt of the multi-Billion expense.

read more »

December 4, 2012

When Do Voters Matter? (UPDATE: Video added)

by lewwaters

Light Rail PotIt never ceases to amaze me how Vancouver City Council Members can be so selective in how they choose to represent the city and voters within the city, picking and choosing when they will support the voters’ choices or just ignore us.

We all know by now how Mayor ‘Teflon’ Tim ‘The Liar’ Leavitt lied his way into office by strongly opposing tolls on the proposed new Interstate Bridge, only to quickly come out of the closet once winning in 2009 to advocate tolls.

We have seen Jeanne Harris melt down on citizens speaking before council in opposition to dragging Portland’s financially failing light rail into our community.

read more »

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.

read more »

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!

read more »

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.

read more »

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.”

June 28, 2011

What will Happen if Citizens Vote Down Light Rail Maintenance Funding?

by lewwaters

Citizens being promised a vote on bringing Portland, Oregon’s light rail a short distance into Vancouver, Washington has been an ongoing controversy for years. Citizens were promised a vote on whether or not they were willing to pay an increased sales tax to fund operation and maintenance. Promises of a vote have been broken and the project is moving ahead.

One council member, Jeanne Stewart speaks out on the broken promise.

The rest seem to approve of a citizen vote being denied.

read more »

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.

read more »

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.

read more »