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Attempted extortion by the Mayor

The City Council yesterday evening showed their disdain for public process and for state laws against using city facilities for promoting campaign issues. And in their afternoon session they bowed to

The City Council yesterday evening showed their disdain for public process and for state laws against using city facilities for promoting campaign issues. And in their afternoon session they bowed to

The City Council yesterday evening showed their disdain for public process and for state laws against using city facilities for promoting campaign issues. And in their afternoon session they bowed to the mayor and his attorney over Lake Whatcom.

In the afternoon closed executive session, Mayor Mark and his city attorney Joan Hoisington put a gag order on all council members regarding the litigation against the county on Lake Whatcom. She has no basis in law to do this - but Mark is performing a squeeze play and needs silence until the election. To his liberal supporters he is pretending to be for cleaning up the lake, while he secretly sabotages all efforts to do so.

Last evening, in what was obviously a carefully planned process by the council, Terry Bornemann as council president changed the agenda and moved the EMS resolution to the first spot on the agenda. He then opened the meeting for public comment - to an almost empty council chamber. One person spoke for the levy. Then each council member made a lengthy speech for the levy - all of this focused to run repeatedly on Channel 10 this week. No public hearing was on the agenda. The resolution was way back in the agenda.

This liberal council again showed its disdain and contempt for public process and open government. My liberal friends have told me it is OK when it is their agenda. They just get upset when conservatives use dirty tricks for their agenda.

John Watts tried to belittle those against the levy by quoting Oscar Wilde, that they "...know the price of everything and the value of nothing." Well, Mr. Watts, the rejoinder to that in the play was "...a sentimentalist, my dear Darlington, is a man who sees an absurd value in everything, and doesn't know the market price of any single thing."

7:00 am
The city of Bellingham website is promoting the passage of the Levy for EMS services - in blatant violation of state laws. RCW 42.17.130 is very specific. Here we have the home page of the website controlled by the city - by the mayor - pushing passage of the levy. It warns that emergency services will not be able to meet our needs if the levy fails - a claim that is strongly argued against by those against the levy. This city home page is being used as an online campaign brochure.

State law forbids use of public office or agency facilities in campaigns. It forbids the use of public facilities to promote a ballot proposition. The city website is certainly public facilities and the home page promotes the ballot proposition for the levy. Very cut and dried. Well, don't expect the city to comply with the law willingly, and don't expect the PDC to enforce the law. The PDC has been wimping out of late to enforcing its own laws.

But we citizens can vote 'NO' on this levy - this extra tax - this attempted extortion by the mayor. The only dedicated, stable funding for emergency services is from our general fund - our normal taxes. We should not trust levies to fund vital services. Levies are for extras like Greenways. Would not the idea of funding fire protection by levy be absurd on its face? We pay taxes for vital services. We have supported the EMS for over 25 years from our regular taxes. If the mayor got out of the business of subsidizing builders and trying to buy and sell land then we would have the money for EMS. I'll be voting no.

Attempted extortion by the Mayor

By John ServaisOn Oct 14, 2003

The City Council yesterday evening showed their disdain for public process and for state laws against using city facilities for promoting campaign issues. And in their afternoon session they bowed to

Very quietly, more and more liberals are

By John ServaisOn Oct 13, 2003

telling me they are voting for Brett Bonner for mayor. Some very prominent ones - but they are not going public. Why not? Fear of retaliation.

Why are they against Mark? Two reasons in general.

The political junkies around town

By John ServaisOn Oct 09, 2003

are abuzz about the trap Brett Bonner stepped into on Tuesday evening at the Labor Council. Dave Warren blindsided Brett without even allowing an introduction. They jammed questions at him, and baited

Mayoral Debate

By John ServaisOn Oct 08, 2003

The two differed strongly on several issues. The differences between them are becoming more apparent and this should continue for the next two weeks.

Brett continues to develop his Lake Whatcom

Election Commentary

By John ServaisOn Oct 06, 2003

Port Commissioner by Sheri Ward
So what happened to all the heat among contenders for this race? It was only a few short weeks ago… (<a href=”

Remember the ‘Truth Squad’?

By John ServaisOn Oct 05, 2003

We need one to follow Asmundson during the next three weeks - and to nudge the Herald to do minimal checking of facts before publishing. I’m referring to Friday’s post below, where it was noted how St

A far superior and more objective analysis

By John ServaisOn Oct 03, 2003

If you’re a liberal and just figure you’ll vote for Mark for mayor, then read Tip Johnson’s analysis of the two candidates. Compared to John Stark’s report in this morning’s Herald, Tip gives a far su

A “Cadillac” system

By John ServaisOn Oct 03, 2003

Mayor Mark is in trouble with young liberal activists - just the voters who normally would support a liberal mayor. But they are remembering his presiding over police and court abuses that targeted yo

Very qualified local political observers comment

By John ServaisOn Oct 01, 2003

I am posting commentary on the election races by several very qualified local political observers who have agreed to write up their views of selected debates, candidates and issues. The first one i

Election Forums

By John ServaisOn Sep 30, 2003

The first of three Bellingham Herald Election Forums is taking place this evening at the County Council chambers.

The forums are being broadcast live on KGMI radio, 790 AM. You can see the vide

News censorship is not some obscure conspiracy theory

By John ServaisOn Sep 29, 2003

Indeed, I watched CBS news and they have the story now. (see 3 pm below) Still nada at the CNN and FOXnews websites. A search shows nothing. Novak of CNN wrote the article that exposed the identity of

US soldiers would never do things like that

By John ServaisOn Sep 29, 2003

How many war prisoners is the USA holding? 6,000? A new website is trying to track all the foreigners the USA is holding in secret prisons or not telling us about. Amnesty International is involved. T

It is probably Brett’s to lose

By John ServaisOn Sep 26, 2003

All week I’m hearing from political pros how Mark will still beat Brett for mayor. Mark is too smooth, they say. Mark knows what to say in every situation. Brett is doing a poor job of exposing Mark’s

Taking care of our own—NOT!

By John ServaisOn Sep 25, 2003

Did you know that US soldiers who get wounded in Iraq and are hospitalized in military hospitals - for amputation of their foot or other treatment - are then charged for the food they receive in the h

I would sure welcome some company online

By John ServaisOn Sep 23, 2003

The look of this home page has changed today. The flag is larger and now fits official flag specs. My thanks to Conrad Suckow for this. While it is larger, the image for downloading is 1/20 the former

The Auditor counted all but the last

By John ServaisOn Sep 23, 2003

25 ballots today. In the only close race, Don Hansey has firmly out-polled Sheri Ward. Given how the Herald viewed the big absentee count on Friday afternoon, we can expect them to tell us tomorrow m

Decreasing the ‘bull’ factor

By John ServaisOn Sep 22, 2003

The dates of the Lunch Time Soapbox Forums schedule has been adjusted. It will now start on Wednesday, October 8, instead of the 1st as originally posted. The forums from that first week have been mov

Conclusive election results are now in

By John ServaisOn Sep 19, 2003

Don Hansey has out-polled Sheri Ward and will face Terry Borneman for city council representative from the 5th Ward. Terry polled only 44% and probably faces a stiff race to retain his seat. Don is to

Insist on the truth about war casualties

By John ServaisOn Sep 19, 2003

Were 8 US soldiers killed yesterday, besides the 3 being reported? We may not learn for days, weeks or months. As casualties mount, the US military appears to be playing with the numbers. The US only

Some comments on national issues

By John ServaisOn Sep 18, 2003

Foreign Internet news sites are reporting 8 US soldiers killed in Iraq today. Nothing at the CNN, Fox and MSNBC websites. These reports are three hours old. What is happening? That would total 11 US b

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