Posts Tagged ‘candidate’

Bob Huff for LA County Supervisor (District 5)

November 20, 2015

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CA State Senator Bob Huff spoke recently @ the Burbank Buck & Ballot Brigade “Bakery & Politics Night”. Huff covered a wide range of topics including¬†transportation, water, public¬†safety, helping small business, film tax¬†credits, the demise of redevelopment, working with¬†others¬†across¬†the aisle to get¬†things¬†done (sometimes incrementally) as a¬†minority leader, reaching Latinos, his journey into public service¬†from Church to City Council to State Senator, and his upcoming campaign to replace Mike Antonovich (termed out) for LA County Supervisor. For more information on his candidacy, please visit his website:¬†http://supervisorbobhuff.com/¬†&/or FaceBook page. Links:¬†FLICKR PHOTO Album | FACEBOOK PHOTO Album
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General Election Info & Primary Post-Mortem

March 21, 2015
Juan Guillen endorsed by Mayor Dr. David Gordon & Vice-Mayor Bob Frutos. (Pic provided by candidate)

Burbank City Council candidate Juan Guillen endorsed by Mayor Dr. David Gordon & Vice-Mayor Bob Frutos.

General 04/14/2015¬†‚ÄstCity Election Information¬†|¬†Election Central

LWV Candidates Forum YouTube Video | Candidates Video Statements

CITY COUNCIL Candidates (2 seats)  * = endorsements

Juan Guillen*: Website | FaceBook | Email | City page | 557-7700

Emily Gabel-Luddy: Website | FaceBook | Email | City page | 559-2015

Will Rogers: Website | FaceBook | Email | City page | 843-2211

Chris Rizzotti: Website | FaceBook | Email | City page | 262-5446

SCHOOL BOARD Candidates (1 seat)  * = endorsements

Armond Aghakhanian*: Website | FaceBook | Email | City | 640-9797

Greg Sousa: Website | FaceBook | Email | City page | 562-3029

COMMENTARY

In the February Primary Election embattled incumbent Emily Gabel-Luddy topped the field with 41% of the vote (4,142), aided by outside Developer/Real Estate campaign contributions, several mailers incl. this one paid for by the IBEW, and an outside¬†political¬†strategist who walked¬†precincts¬†with her. Gabel-Luddy’s vote was considerably less than incumbents in the 2013 primary (Frutos*: 5,262 – 53.3%, Dr.¬†Gordon: 4,705 – 47.7%,¬†Talamantes: 4,341 – 44%), but on a par with¬†Dave Golonski: (4,113 – 41.7%). Gabel-Luddy was portrayed by some as a “Pro-Development Nimby” candidate, who’s approval of¬†the Talaria traffic nightmare on Olive & bloated 550 Third St/Cypress mixed-use projects with their “exceptional” density bonuses and lack of affordable housing did not sit well with many residents who feel she hasn’t really represented them.¬†Her¬†animus¬†towards Mayor David Gordon who she¬†failed to support for Mayor, and her decision to join former Councilman Dave Golonski in the politically motivated decision not to re-appoint Bob Frutos to the Police Commission after her narrow & controversial 87 vote election win in 2011, probably didn’t help her either, nor did her¬†endorsement¬†of fellow Pro-Development candidate Chris Rizzotti, who received $40k in independent expenditure from the Chicago based National Assoc. of Realtors PAC.

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While you can make an argument that her experience in L.A. Planning is helpful, it’s only helpful to the degree she uses it to protect Burbank residents & neighborhoods. I do think she would be less “hostile” than Rogers or Rizzotti towards Dr Gordon & Mr Frutos, but that’s not saying much. It may seem like I’m being hard on Emily but as I reflect on the last 4 years I can’t think of anything she’s done to help my family or protect my neighborhood outside of last weeks support of an IDCO to stop the rampant Mansionization ruining Burbank. Gabel-Luddy voted to raise our Utility Rates 4 years in a row, set a record for the least productive Council in Burbank history during her 1 year as pro term Mayor, has tried to turn our local election into a partisan contest, and proudly supports Abortion. She also wanted to give the multi-Billion $ Ikea corporation a $800k tax break, refusing to join Gordon/Frutos in throwing that out during the Ikea deliberations even after Ikea agreed out of pride. I don’t dislike Emily but I do dislike her political ideology. Alas, with a sizable lead, the power of incumbency, and significantly (3x) more money than Rogers & Guillen, it appears we maybe set for another 4 years of Emily. We can only hope her recent IDCO support is not an election ploy but a change of heart and focus on whom she will serve if re-elected.

In what some might consider a surprise, Will Rogers finished 2nd with 35% of the Vote (3535), well ahead of the presumed runner-up Chris Rizzotti, despite being outspent by $50k. Rogers showed that local elections are still more about your ground game. In fact, Rogers schooled the challengers on how to run a successful grassroots campaign in Burbank, and its all about knocking on doors & having as many 1:1 conversations with residents as possible Рnot slick marketing campaigns, online advertising blitzes on Facebook or MyBurbank.com, fancy websites big on style but small on substance, Email lists or even Social Media, although Rogers used Social Media better than most to personally address a number of issues on both his own personal FB page and the comments section of the Burbank Leader, reveling just how biased some of the endorsement processes were, esp. the BAOR who backed Rizzotti & Gabel-Luddy.

In a letter published in the Burbank Leader, Rogers states:¬†“We went up against big money from far outside Burbank ‚ÄĒ and even outside California. We did it without waves of political mail, or pros counterfeiting a grass-roots campaign. Rather than make secret promises to politicians and special interests, we’ve stayed independent. We’ve done it without K Street consultants from Washington, D.C., ‘robo-calls,’ or opinion polls to ‘assess what the issues were.’ We’ve done it despite committed opposition from an array of former city officials best remembered for their agenda of unrestricted development at virtually any cost, whether in taxpayer cash, traffic, burdens on residents, or even all three.¬†Burbank’s voters have made it clear they don’t want to be talked to. They want to be listened to. Another more familiar message has also been sent once again: Burbank is not for sale”. – (Ditto to Burbank not being For Sale!)

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As the new front runner for the open Council seat vacated by Gary Bric, Rogers now goes from the hunter to the hunted, underdog to bunny, and expect those behind him, in particular Rizzotti, to go after Rogers on a number of fronts. As Dan Evans pointed out in the Burbank Leadership Candidates Forum, Roger’s listing his current occupation as an “Investigative Reporter” was not really true‚ĶRogers left the Burbank Leader in 2003 and last wrote a paid column for an unnamed individual in 2007. You can read that columns here and make your own conclusions. Rogers has also demonstrated an animus towards Mayor Gordon. In April last year I made a rare appearance before the City Council on what’s known as Non-Profit night where CDBG (Community Development Block Grant) funds are distributed. The room was full of community volunteers sharing all the wonderful work groups like FPV, BTAC, FSA, Boys & Girls Club do. Rogers and his close friend and supporter Dave Golonski were there but instead of speaking to these issues, they engaged in a bizarre politically motivated attack on Mayor David Gordon that was totally out of place. You can see Rogers public comments & attack video here. After watching the video and reading his past columns of paid political hit pieces, you have to ask yourself “Is this who you want on the Council” and consider the dynamics of how he’ll work with his colleagues, none of whom are endorsing him. His association with Golonski is also a big concern; the last thing we need is a return to the political games & retaliation that were hallmarks of the Golonski era. Do we want a 6th Golonski term via Rogers? Finally, while Rogers has done an excellent job breaking down some of the big issues like the Talaria & 3rd St/Cypress projects and recent Airport developments on his website, he’s largely been MIA when these issues came before the Council & Planning Board. It’s easy to sit back and criticize others while saying what you would have done after the fact, but where were you when the residents needed you to fight for them? Rogers was a no-show at the Talaria public hearings, 3rdSt/Cypress project (in fairness to him the Council tried to sneak this one through at the last meeting of the year a few days before Christmas),¬†the recent Sunday Night emergency Airport meeting and IDCO Mansionization discussion. I believe what people DO not what they Say and despite his position papers which I tend to agree with, I’m not sure I trust Roger’s to be any different from Mr Golonski if elected. Time will tell.

While I’m sure candidate Chris Rizzotti is happy to be in the run-off, I can’t imagine he’s happy with the results¬†given¬†the amount of¬†money being poured into his campaign. Rizzotti finished¬†almost¬†1200 votes behind Rogers with 23% of the Vote (2,356).¬†Rizzotti was the first to declare, had signs up before Thanksgiving, and was the¬†establishments¬†hand picked candidate to replace Gary Bric. He had the most¬†money, having a $60k war chest; $20k campaign and $40k Ind/PACS¬†vs. Rogers $9k & Juan’s Guillens $12k. That means Rizzotti spent about $26/vote vs¬†Juan’s $5/vote, with just 53 votes separating them, while Rogers did best @ about $3/vote.¬†Rizzotti¬†spent $6k alone with one local online marketing company who had promoted the Talaria project (Countertuity).¬†But Rizzotti’s¬†unequivocal¬†support for the Talaria & overbuilt 3rd St/Cypress “mixed-use” projects, along with Mansionization¬†was enough to turn people off a candidate widely¬†perceived¬†as¬†trying¬†to buy the election. ¬†Rizzotti’s major¬†claim¬†to fame prior to running was the infamous Puppy Mill Ordinance (PMO). Rizzotti is also backed by Mike Gatto who supported AB1266, the Co-Ed Bathroom Bill and was labelled “an Anti-Gay Republican” by Brett Loutensock, a local political operative & close friend/tenant of Dave Golonski who’s supporting Rogers in undoubtedly the low-point of the campaign.¬†He and his¬†wife Shelley Rizzotti’s past animus towards Mayor Gordon and anyone who dared oppose the PMO including Bob Frutos didn’t help. People want candidates who are going to focus on the big issues, not promoting an ideological personal agenda. They want to get back to the basics of providing municipal services not funding pet projects i.e. fixing our streets, providing extra Police to crack down on speeding and SRO’s in our schools. They want people without animus who will work together with their colleagues to get things done for our benefit, not rubber stamps for Staff’s development goals. Look for the Rizzotti campaign to go after Rogers. The question is are the National Assoc. of Realtors and outside Developers going to continue to pour in more money into a marginal candidate who probably can’t win given the 1200 votes he needs to make up? And even if they do, what outside of attacking Rogers do they plan to do to turn things around? Clearly throwing money at the problem isn’t working and he can’t run from his voting record on the Planning Board. Rizzotti’s going to have to do more than putting new signs on Cusumano owned properties all over town to convince voters he’s the best candidate. Perhaps a softer approach i.e more listening & less selling/yelling that highlights his community service (Schools/Measure S, Family Promise, Young Life etc) and original non-generic ideas to make Burbank a better place for us residents will help.

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Juan Guillen who had the backing of Mayor David Gordon showed that “service above self” does matter with a close 4th (2,303 – 23%), just a few votes behind Rizzotti. I’ve never seen a candidate serve his community more than Guillen has the last few years; from Bike Angels to Salvation Army to helping Veterans, mentoring Youth to feeding the Homeless‚Ķwherever there’s been a need, Juan Guillen has been there! He’s done a great job on the Library Board and no candidate has attended more Council meetings and spoken up for residents more than he has. While other candidates talk about what they would have done re Talaria or the 3rdSt/Cypress mixed-use development, Guillen was the only candidate to show up and speak up against these projects on behalf of residents. As stated earlier, I believe what people DO, not what they Say, and Guillen has proved to me that he will fight to protect our neighborhoods as he fought to protect our freedom as a Marine. The challenge for Guillen is convincing enough people he’s ready to lead now, and while he may not be as polished or eloquent in terms of public speaking as Rogers or Rizzotti, he has his heart in the right place which is why Gloria & I are endorsing him. That said, he has a lot of work to do! As a business owner he can’t afford to take a few weeks off work to knock on doors like Rogers who doesn’t run a business or work (FT), but he’s going to have to find away to maximize his time and reach more voters. A big plus is his recent endorsement by popular Vice-Mayor Bob Frutos who chose to sit-out the Primary;¬†If Bob can get even 1/2 of the 5262 people who voted for him to support Guillen, then he has a real change of springing an upset. Unfortunately there’s only 1 more scheduled Candidate’s Forum hosted by the Chamber of Commerce next week and as far as I know it’s not going to be televised or filmed, which is a real pity for the public who I’m sure would like to hear where all the remaining candidates stand on the big issues without reading from cue-cards. [* Update 3/30 – Elise Stearns-Niesen has joined the ever increasing list of Juan Guillen endorsements that also includes School Board President Roberta Grande Reynolds and Board-Elect Steve Ferguson.]

Juan Guillen for Burbank Council 2015 Campaign Event РFLICKR Photo Album | FaceBook Photo Album

Bob Frutos – Relections on his 1st Year in Office

March 29, 2014

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Burbank Councilman Bob Frutos – “Reflections on the 1st Year in Office” event @ The Buck and Ballot Brigade Pizza & Politics night in Burbank. Among the topics discussed; Unlicensed Care Facilities and upcoming Public & Council meetings re¬†IDCO, Burbank Airport B-6 Property aka “Opportunity site” ideas/options (incl. Sports stadium), IKEA’s approval, Hobby Lobby, AB 1266 – the Co-Ed Bathroom/Shower Bill, the (premature) announcement by Christopher Rizzoti of his intent to run for Council and the negative (hostile) reaction, and many other local, state & federal issues.

FLICKR PHOTO Album | FACEBOOK PHOTO Album

Next Event: Debbie Kukta, City Treasurer speaks about Burbank Finances

Friday, April 25th 6-8pm. Free Pizza! Links: FLYER | RSVP/Info email

Burbank General Election Info & Endorsements

April 5, 2013

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CITY COUNCIL Candidates (2)

David Gordon*: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 842-2111
Jess Talamantes*: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 478-5377
David Nos: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 563-5555
Dave Golonski: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 843-2948

SCHOOL BOARD Candidates (2)

Larry Applebaum*: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 848-8925
Charlene Tabet*: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 468-6066
Steve Ferguson: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 415-9048
Dave Dobson: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 439-0720

Special Sewer Tax Increase – NO

ELECTION Information: Tuesday 4/09/2013

City Election Information | Burbank Votes FaceBook page

Voting by Mail (free): Mail Ballots no later than Friday 4/5/13.
Ballot Drop-off Times: Sat. 4/6 9am-4pm & Tue. 4/9 7am-7pm.
Drop Locations: City Hall*, McCambridge Recreation Ctr., Buena Vista Library, Joslyn Center & Tutle Center. (* City Hall also open Mon. 8am-5pm)

Ballots Received @ 4/8/13 = approx. 9,000

Links: School Board Candidates Q&A | City Council Candidates Q&A

Burbank Election Commentary & Analysis

April 2, 2013

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Congratulations to Councilman-Elect Bob Frutos on his stunning election win in our recent Burbank Primary, becoming the first non-incumbant to be elected outright in a Primary since Bob Kramer did it 18yrs ago in 1995. More remarkable is the fact that Frutos easily defeated 3 well-known incumbents, whereas Kramer won 1 of 2 open seats at the time. Frutos won the election because while the City Council majority were busy ignoring the BPD Litigation “mess” and majoring on minors (puppy mills, downtown muzak etc), Frutos was having conversations about the Big Issues with the Community such as our ever-increasing Utility Rates & Renewable costs; BPD Litigation costs ($7.1M spent + $3.2M owed), Police Reforms & Public Safety; Bonuses & Pay Raises and their impact on our massive $252 million unfunded Pension Liability; Fiscal responsibility & Budget Priorities that maintain our excellent City Services, Neighborhood Protections and Small Business (see Videos below). Frutos is a very likable & humble leader committed to serving the people’s best interests and I wish him well as he takes his seat in May. May God bless and guide Bob Frutos.

Dr. David Gordon finished 2nd (48%) & was the top incumbent vote-getter by 364 votes over Jess Talamantes (46%) and 20yr incumbent Dave Golonski (44%). This result while surprising to some, was not a surprise to me given Dr. Gordon’s track record on the above-mentioned issues the last 4 years. He’s the only Councilmember who has consistantly asked questions about these issues and challenged his colleagues and staff on their assertions & positions. Now that both Bob Frutos and Juan Guillen are endorsing Dr. Gordon, I expect him to receive a nice bump & easily win re-election, despite the negative campaign being propagated by Pro-Golonski Supporters and the Burbank Leader, providing he continues to campaign & engage the issues.

The race is really for 2nd and that choice is not so clear-cut. When you examine the voting record of Mr Talamantes & Mr Golonski over the last 4 years on the Big Issues, there’s really not much difference. Both have voted to raise Utility Rates 4 years in row while approving a 21% pay raise for BWP GM Ron Davis, who was already grossing $250M, & 7-11% pay raises to Sr BWP Mgm’t in the middle of the worse recession since 1929. Both have supported the virtual blank check given to our City Attorney’s office which has already spent over $7.1 million on outside Attorney’s defending BPD related Litigation. Two of the three cases that made it to trial have resulted in expensive Jury verdicts against the City; we’re currently on the hook for another $3.2M (awards + costs) and now have to deal with a 2nd wave of wrongful termination lawsuits, 3 of which have already been filed by former BPD Officers. Yet we’ve just learned that several fired Officers were cleared of any wrong doing in several independent District Attorney/Sheriff Dept. investigations dating back to 2011. Apparently no one on the Council knew about or had seen these clearance letters, yet they’re directing the City Attorney in these matters. Another epic failure to lead by a Council majority who continue to bury their collective heads in the sand, deny any wrong-doing despite clear trial evidence to the contrary and circle the wagons. It’s not “unfortunate” it’s “unforgivable”!

What that means for you and me is that instead of a new (scaled-down) Central Library or Boys & Girls Club Bldg. or McCambridge Pool, we’re giving $Millions to Lawyers & Law Firms who are getting rich. When the new Council seats in May we need to begin an outside investigation & audit of our City Attorney’s Office re their handling/mis-handling of the BPD “mess”, as well as the City Council’s involvement.

Continuing; Both Golonski & Talamantes voted to support the City’s legal defense against the release of Public Employee Salaries & Bonuses ($4 million paid out) when they were sued by the Burbank Leader’s parent company and lost, although to his credit Mr Talamantes did vote to suspend the Bonus program while it’s creator Dave Golonski defiantly supported it’s continuation. I could go on…their Failure to repay $50 Million in Redevelopment Loans back to the General Fund prior to the Redevelopment Agency’s dissolution c/o Governor Brown, a $2 Million Golf Course bailout while cutting the ($8k) Easter Eggsplosion for our kids, the Recycle Center debacle, the 3yr Verdugo Pool delay etc. Bottom line; neither incumbent has represented the community well and their bad decisions have cost us $Millions.

Which leaves former School Board Pres. David Nos. I like the fact that he’s a small-business owner who’s experienced financial hardship and can hopefully relate to the rest of us and make better financial decisions than the other 2 guys who don’t have F/T Jobs or run a business. The problem with Nos is a) He hasn’t taken a public position on what I consider the Big Issues and b) He’s too far behind. Yes he’s picked up Bob Frutos endorsement but that’s not enough to close a 1200 vote gap IMO. For comparison, Frutos was able to make up about 700 Votes on Emily Gabel-Luddy in 2011 with Gary Bric’s post-primary endorsement. Todd Campbell was able to turnaround 1841 Votes on Bric in 2003 so it’s not impossible given the anticipated continuation of the anti-Talamantes campaign by anti-Walmart forces, but the fear is by voting for Nos you maybe enabling Dave Golonski to sneak past Jess. This is causing many people to choose the lesser of 2 evils (so-to-speak) and Vote for Jess Talamanates in order to keep Mr Golonski off the Council. It’s an interesting delimma.

I like Jess & Dave and have supported them in the past but can’t support both based on what they’ve done the last 4 years. I also think it’s time for Dave Golonski to move on…we have plenty of experience on the Council and I don’t know why anyone would want to serve more than 2 terms (8yrs), let alone 5 terms (20 years). Dave really should take a leaf out of former Mayor/Councilwoman Marsha Ramos playbook; She served just 2 terms before helping to start Family Promise of ESFV, a wonderful non-profit working in partnership with the faith-based community to provide housing & resources for temporary homeless families. She then moved on to become Chair of the CA American Lung Assoc., which I get a real kick out of being one of the guys who campaigned to create our wonderful Second-hand Smoke Control Ordinance in 2007. And just a few weeks ago she celebrated another success with the passage of the Measure S School Bond, a remarkable feat given the relatively small time window to campaign, limited funds, and all the confusion & controversy surrounding the Bond. So the good news for Dave or whichever incumbent is unsuccessful in their re-election bid is – There is Life after the Council. ūüôā

Links: David Nos “Issues” Q&A | Open Letter to Burbank City Council re Bonuses & Burbank Police Dept. Litigation | pltf-evidience-in-opp-to-defs-msj-rodriguez-part-1-2-3789487

[Note: Story updated w/new links. Orig. posted March 22nd]

Burbank Primary Election Info & Endorsements

February 21, 2013

For the 3 people who care Ballots-1Ballots-3

02/26/2013 – City Election Information | Burbank Votes FaceBook page

CITY COUNCIL Candidates (3)

Bob Frutos*: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 823-6541
David Gordon*: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 842-2111
Juan Guillen*: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 557-7700
David Nos: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 563-5555
Jess Talamantes: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 478-5377
Dave Golonski: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 843-2948

SCHOOL BOARD Candidates (2)

Larry Applebaum*: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 848-8925
Charlene Tabet*: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 468-6066
Steve Ferguson: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 415-9048
Dave Dobson: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 439-0720
Armond Aghakhanian: City | Website | FaceBook | Email | 962-2795

CITY CLERK Candidates (1)

Zizette Mullins*: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email | 381-9960
Nonna Von Sonn: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email |
Gloria Salas: City page | Website | FaceBook | Email |

Councilman David Gordon Holiday Message

December 22, 2012

Holiday Message from Burbank Councilman Dr. David Gordon:

“I want to wish everyone a very safe and happy Holiday and wish each of you a prosperous and healthy New Year. As a community we have a long history of pulling together to over come any obstacle. I want to thank the residents of Burbank for all they do to make our city a great place to call home. Happy Holidays!”

Father  Son Photo Session

https://www.facebook.com/councilmandavid.gordon? | http://www.gordonforburbank.com/

Burbank Recount – Denied, 2nd Request pulled

April 29, 2011

Burbank City Clerk Margarita Campos explains her decision to deny a substitute request for hand Recount of the General Election made by Burbank voters Fronnie Lewis and Kevin & Linda Muldoon. Fronnie Lewis has an excellent recap here.

BREAKING NEWS: It appears Kevin & Linda Muldoon, Fronnie Lewis and Judy Alter from Protect California Ballots¬†have filed a 2nd Protest & Recount Request contenting the “completion of the canvass” occurred when the City Council declared the results Tuesday, thus triggering the 5 day “protest” period. Looks like a “Hail Mary” (pass) but here’s the Recount Letter (2): +¬†Recount Request Letter¬†(attachment)¬†

UPDATE: 5/5/11 According to Fronnie Lewis, the 2nd Recount Request has been duly withdrawn. Read all the details here.

-LINKS-

Recount Rejection Letter to Fronnie Lewis

CA Elections Code Sect. 15620-15634

Burbank Election Results & Recount + Bonuses

April 25, 2011

Emily Gabel-Luddy – 4,411 Votes (49.7%) [+11 Votes]

Bob Frutos Р4,316  Votes (48.7%) [+2 Votes]

Ballots Cast Р8,866 (15.7% of 56, 239 Registered Voters) [+13 Votes]

Measure U – PASSED with 5,720 YES votes vs. 2,562 ¬†NO’s ¬†[+456/+7]

Note: [+] = Differential between Preliminary & Final Results

* notice the interesting +456 Vote increase in Measure U?

Link: Election Night Photos

BREAKING NEWS 4/21/11: RECOUNT Official or is it? (Updated 4/26/11)

It appears Burbank’s elected City Clerk Margarita Campos plan is to simply ignore residents Protest and demand for a Recount. Fronnie Lewis has posted 4 excellent Election Recount stories over at MediaCityGroove.com yet not a word about it in our local “newspaper” The¬†Burbank (mis-)Leader. Last week a Hand Recount was initiated by the election watchdog group¬†Protect California Ballots¬†and Burbank resident George Marciniw, who apparently got cold feet the next day. A legal substitute request was then submitted by¬†Fronnie Lewis herself and Kevin Muldoon & his wife Linda within the required 24 hour period. As of 6pm yesterday (4/25/11) Mr Muldoon is still waiting word as to if/when the Recount will proceed. According to Kevin,¬†“The City Clerk is holding by that the original request was withdrawn and the deadline missed”. Fronnie Lewis contents ¬†the following here:

“The recount or ‘protest’ request as the city is calling it was received on Wednesday 20, 2011 before 5 p.m.¬†George Marciniw‚Äôs withdrawal letter was not dropped off at the Burbank City Clerk‚Äôs office until Thursday, April 21. In his letter (which I have a copy of) Marciniw says quote: The organization ‘Protect California Ballots’ representative Judy Alter would like to pursue the recount using Journalist Fronnie Lewis to take my place if that is acceptable.¬†According to the California Deputy Secretary of State, Lowell Finley, this is acceptable and legal.¬†Also on Thursday April 21, I handed City Clerk Margarita Campos my personal letter volunteering to replace Marciniw in the recount request process. While I was there, Kevin Muldoon came in with two letters and handed them to Campos. All three letters were delivered to the city clerk before 5 p.m. Thursday, April 21.”

It appears that the City is resisting the Recount request and in doing so further eroding any remaining confidence in their honesty and integrity, not to mention the much maligned mail-in ballot process itself which has failed to increase voter turnout and must be changed. You can read Fronnie’s stories by clicking on the below links including her most recent update¬†and as always there’s lots of chatter over @ the SemiChorus Blog. You can also read my own Recount related email correspondence with City Clerk Margarita Campos¬†here. I took the liberty of forwarding a copy to Judy Alter (emeritus¬†UCLA¬†Professor)¬†@¬†Protect California Ballots¬†who responded with the following statements via email:

“I believe that Ms Campos has not done a recount.¬† I checked with the CA Deputy Secretary of State, Lowell Finley, about her assertion about reading only one name, etc.¬† She is wrong.¬† A recount of the city council race of all the ballots needs to have the person looking at the ballot and reading the vote to say¬† Bob, Emily or no vote.¬† One ballot will have only one vote for that race.¬† It will not take any more time.¬† I will write this out for her.¬† I have been manager of two citizen recounts and know that this is the required process. Asking for more money is also wrong.”

“They cannot charge by the names or ballots but only for the time the recount board members, usually $100 per person of $400.”

“The opportunity to recount an entire race is too important.¬† We have secret vote counting and we the people must actually see how the voters voted”.

Declaring the Results of the General Election is on tonight’s Council Agenda but astoninglishly there’s no mention at all of the Protests filed in Ms. Campos Staff Report. It’s almost as if the City is daring those concerned with this unique opportunity to audit and validate the current system to file a Lawsuit…I guess they don’t already have enough (11 current & 14 more anticipated cases to come all on City Manager Mike Flad’s watch). It’s time for newly elected Attorney General Kamala Harris to follow through on one of her election pledges and really take a look at what’s going on here in Burbank. More post Election Commentary to come shortly. In the meantime, please consider donating to¬†Protect California Ballots¬†to help them pay for our Recount.

BONUSES Lawsuit Update

Also of note this weekend, an update on the Burbank Leader vs. City of Burbank “Bonuses” Lawsuit, in which the City claims The Leader’s request¬†to obtain the amount of bonuses paid to individual public employees is “illogical”. The L.A. Times is also running the story here¬†with some good comments. The only thing “illogical” & “suspicious” IMO is the City’s stubborn refusal to comply with the Law (FOIA request) & spend thousands of taxpayers dollars (with Council approval) fighting a case they’re destined to loose, while demonstrating to all of us that they still just don’t get it…you work for us! Any public employee unwilling to disclose their salary & bonuses should tender their resignation immediately & go work in the private sector. There are 100’s if not 1,000’s of people who will gladly take your job and all the benefits that come with it ¬†(health plan, holiday pay, pension etc).¬†These people’s arrogance (Scott, Wilke, Flad etc.), lack of transparency ¬†and sense of entitlement is absolutely astounding!

–Links–

The Recount: Why I support it and what will it cost

Update-on-the-burbank-election-recount-drama

News Alert: Recount in Burbank City Council race

More on the Recount of the Burbank City Council run-off

Burbank Election Guide – for “Dummies”

March 29, 2011

* Vote for ROBERT (BOB) FRUTOS for Burbank City Council

Police Commission President Robert Frutos is a 17 year Burbank resident with an outstanding record of community service. He has 24 years of law enforcement experience at LAPD, which makes him the best candidate by far to deal with the BPD ‚Äúmess‚ÄĚ and the institution of real reforms, including an independent Inspector with wide-reaching oversight powers who would report directly to the City Council. He has what I consider a ‚Äúfiscally-conservative‚ÄĚ approach to dealing with many of the financial issues we face; He strongly opposes the controversial payment of over $1 million in bonuses to Burbank public employees, as well as the 7-11% pay increases handed out to Snr. BWP Executives¬†(21% over 3 years for GM Ron Davis) just weeks after our Utility & Water Rates we‚Äôre increased, the latter by a whopping 13%. He believes in total transparency with respect to the release of information on public employee salaries & bonuses, which also applies to a recent Civil Service Board members request for a list of all employees who are related to each other during a discussion about nepotism. In short, Robert gets it; He understands the financial hardships many are facing paying their mortgages/rent & utility bills, and is especially sensitive to the needs of our Seniors. He‚Äôs also opposed to further cuts in City Services including Police, Fire and Park services. I like his humility and the fact that he shares the same Christian values we do; I‚Äôve seen so much grandstanding, anger & hostility at recent Council meetings, and he would be refreshing change for the better, a voice of reason, a voice of the people.

UPDATE 4/11/11. Bob Frutos Statement in response to Burbank (mis)Leader’s attacks c/o Fronnie Lewis Media City Groove Blog:

“‚ÄúThe IBEW represents Burbank City Employees and is a part of our community. As a candidate I do not control who they chose to support or what they chose to do. I appreciate their support of my ideas to balance our city budget and I am very happy they joined me in supporting the idea that our employees should pay into their retirement plans and that employee bonuses must come to an end. From what I have seen the IBEW is not engaged in personal attacks but is asking questions about the source of contributions and endorsements.‚ÄĚ – Bob Frutos

* Vote NO on Measure U РUtility Users TAX

Don’t be fooled by the City’s deceptive marketing of this ballot measure as a “modernization” of the UUT to fund City Services; It’s an attempt to expand what the City can TAX and protect themselves from having to refund telecommunication giants such as AT&T & Verizon for what maybe illegal Utility Tax charges on our Cell Phone bills (check your Bills folks…it’s there). They also want to TAX Satellite TV subscribers, so if you’re a Direct TV or DISH Network subscriber like us, you’ll be taxed an extra 7%. VOIP Subscribers (Vonage) will also be subject to this TAX, as will Cable & DSL Subscribers. You name it, they want to TAX it! Very Important Note: As stated by City Manager Mike Flad when questioned in a recent open Council meeting, these funds are “unrestricted” General Fund monies, which means they can be used for anything i.e. revenues generated from the UUT are not set-aside or earmarked specifically for Parks or Safety Services but can be used to pay public employee Bonuses, BPD litigation costs that the City refuses to provide an accounting for, BWP Snr Mgm’t¬†¬†pay raises, and whatever else they want. Given the City chose to raise Water Rates 13.5% last year (almost twice the actual MWD increase) and hand BWP GM Ron Davis a 21% pay raise over 3 years, voting NO on this measure is also a great way to protest that unconscionable decision. And don’t forget, BWP has proposed more Rate increases (+8.4% Water, +8% Garbage, +4% Sewer) this June. Please spread the word on this …you will be paying more by virtue of additional TAXES ¬†on top of further Utility Rate hikes!

-LINKS-

Bob Frutos for Burbank City Council Web Site

Ballotpedia – CA Utility User Taxes

Burbank Voter Information Pamphlet

Craig Sherwood – BurbankNBeyond.com Commentary

SemiChorus Blog – It’s not “modernization”, it’s extension


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