Posts Tagged ‘city’

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

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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’s 100th Birthday Photos

July 10, 2011

FaceBook PHOTO Album link | PhotoBucket PHOTO Album

Burbank loses Lawsuit – Must Disclose Bonuses

May 20, 2011

As predicted in my Open Letter to the Burbank City Council here, the Burbank Leader has prevailed in its Lawsuit against the City of Burbank. According to this report, L.A. Superior Court Judge Ann I Jones has ordered the City to release Bonus amounts paid to individual City employees, citing legal precedence in a 2007 California Supreme Court decision that shows the taxpaying public’s right to know trumps workplace privacy concerns. The City will also have to pay The Burbank Leader’s legal costs, currently $37,000 and rising. Given the City’s stubborn refusal to comply with the Law in this matter, I think the Council majority who authorized & approved the City’s futile “defense” should pay those costs out of their own pockets. They should also fire Juli Scott, whose ¬†comments & conduct in refusing to comply with this FOIA request (and numerous others over the years) have been embarassing. A victory for open transparent Government!

–Links–

Burbank Leader Story (Gretchen Meier) | Editorial 5/20 | Legal Costs 5/24

Burbank Press Release – City Manager proposes suspension of Merit Pay

My Open Letter to the Council & Document/Article links

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 Community Events

April 16, 2011

Lots of fun Community Events this weekend to help us forget about all the bad things going on @ City Hall.

Burbank YMCA Healthy Kids Day!  * PHOTOS | VIDEO *

Today from 11am‚ÄĎ3pm in the Y parking lot at the corner of Third & San Jose. Games & activities, nutritional information and healthy treats. Free.

Thomas Jefferson Elementary Carnival

Today from 12:00-5:00pm TJE Carnival

Location: Upper & Lower Playgrounds 1900 N. Sixth St, Burbank, CA 91504

Downtown Burbank ART’S Festival ¬†*¬†PHOTO’S¬†*

Sat. & Sun. from  ‎10am-5pm  Arts Festival

Location: San Fernando Blvd. between Magnolia Blvd. and Olive Ave.

Kiwanis Car Show and Arts & Crafts Fair

Sunday from 9:30am-3pm  Car Show

Location: Johnny Carson Park, 400 Bob Hope Dr., Burbank.


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