In the wisdom of a person who considers himself true leader:

The need and rationale to have a severance pay established at twenty four (24) months no longer exists.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Exciting news.

 

Effective September 1, 2015, Chief Allen Church volunteered to a modification in his employment contract.

 

Listen to this audio of the August 20 meeting.

 

Commissioner William Gates read this statement into the record:

‘the need and rationale to have severance pay of 24 months no longer exists.’

 

Ask yourself two questions.

 

One.

Why, in November 2010, did Chief Allen Church, Commissioner William Gates and Commissioner James Fossos feel it necessary to hold a secret meeting to modify the chiefs’ contract mid term to read 24 months severance pay instead of 12 months severance pay? (Section 7b) It passed with a 4-1 after sudden executive session.

Why was it raised to 24 months? What did he fear? Who did he fear?

 

Two.

What happened August 4th 2015 that made Chief Allen Church feel comfortable waiving a $180,000 dollar severance package?

 

 

Do you consider this corruption?

It is apparent that Chief Church, and most of the commissioners, considers the two candidates on the ballot as peas in the same pod, easily manipulated to disregard the struggle of the people and maintain a smooth ride of business as usual with unnecessary tax increases.

 

There has been ample evidence from the rubber stamp choices and the put a better public face on the district opinions from the candidates that they should feel very comfortable. But listen to the audio and let me know what you think.

 

Church contract

 

Church contract.0001

 

 

What do you think? Are you comfortable with 5 out of 5 commissioners rubber stamping everything the chief wants? Putting personal and union interests above safety?

 

I offer a solution.

 

Put an end to a corrupt and secret government.

Write-In Jerry Galland for Position 2

 

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When I speak of open government and public records, some roll their eyes and say it is my imagination.

And if the reader is from the fire department or a friend, they call bullshit.

 

But here is one example of withholding information until the last possible second.

 

Remember when Roger Flygare, the combat vet who claims falsely multiple tours in Vietnam and proudly thrusts his, according to some, self awarded, Purple Heart around, and who, at the Federal Way Mirror’s candidate forum, boasted to have been hand picked to be on the Pro committee for the upcoming ballot measure?

Obviously, things were nicely in place to assign a Pro committee.

In response, about a week later I sent an email to all five commissioners requesting to be on the Con committee.

 

Then a week or so later, I read in the Mirror that I need to submit my request to Lauri Perry at the fire district. So I do that on July 23rd.

They set an arbitrary closing date of August 5th at 8am. Three full business days until the committee assignments needed to be sent in on August 7th. Included information was who the spokesperson was, and contact information.

Given the deadlines with King County Elections, it would seem reasonable that the seating of the committees would be done that same week and the members notified accordingly.

So, when Saturday morning came, and no notice from Lauri Perry, I assumed I was not selected. That morning I sent an email to Elections asking who the committee members were.

 

Executive Assistant Lauri Perry must work weekends, too. And there must be someone working at Elections on Saturday that could contact her in case of emergency. Because at about half past 4 that evening I get an email from Ms Perry naming the two members of the Con committee, and I am one of them. It is sorely lacking basic information though. Other than the message “Please follow the directions on the King County Elections website to draft and submit a con statement” with no links.

 

For example, if you were going to write a statement, for or against, a measure, would it not be reasonable to include the resolution or ballot measure language with the email? Or, since a single point of contact is required by Elections, how about telling the committee who the district chose as spokesperson.

Or, even the most basic of all information, how about what the rules are for preparing a statement? Who to file with? When it is due?

Nah. Why share any of that? Is there a statue saying the district must do so?

 

On Monday, I sent a request to Ms. Perry asking for the text of the resolution. It was sent to me the next day.

 

Also on Monday, so that I knew who was the the district had chosen as spokesperson for my committee, I sent a request to Ms. Perry asking for a copy of the committee information filed with Elections.

 

Remember, Elections has deadlines and they are cast in stone. Miss it and too bad. NO EXCEPTIONS!

 

The district waited until nearly three o’clock Thursday afternoon to provide me with the information they should have sent a week prior.

 

The deadline with Elections?

 

Oh, plenty of time. That isn’t until 4:30. Thursday.

While the Pro committee enjoys weeks of preparation, full favor of the district and full access to whatever they want or need to meet requirements, the district is very comfortable hiding information and delaying release of critical information to the Con committee.

 

Not that there is a requirement to be civil mind you. But it just underscores the games at this district.

 

Playing games is commonplace, but playing games with what they call critical bond measure, $39 million in equipment and repairs, is just another example of your district administration thumbing their nose at the citizens.

 

And about those games.

Normal procedure with King County Elections is to exchange the committee statements the same day as the deadline, knowing time is critical to formulate rebuttals.

 

But, alas, not this year. Deadline is Monday, Elections did not forward the statements Thursday.

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There seems to be a lot of indecision at the fire district over how much they absolutely must have in new capital revenue.

An all-over-the-map approach to accountable and open government.

 

On the April ballot was a bond for $53.7 million which the district described as ‘absolutely essential to the safety of the citizens’ of the district.

We were repeatedly told there was not one dollar that could be cut without jeopardizing the safety of the firefighters, the reliability of the equipment or prevent catastrophic failure of the fire stations.

And after getting within 407 votes of passing, on a bond they under represented and undersold the importance of, rushed back into special meetings to, not come forward with a better sales pitch and get it passed, but rather to distrust their capabilities and tell the voters they don’t trust them.

Let’s set aside for a moment that none of these conditions suddenly appeared, they were all clearly known to the district for years while leadership simply kicked them down the road as precious dollars were spent on non-essential expenses.

 

 Your reaction?

 

So I, and every single person I spoke with about the failure of the bond, were struck by a glaring diversion.

Why, if the absolute minimum needed was $53.7 million, could the district possibly sell the voters a reduced cost package with the upcoming proposed $39 million bond? Not withstanding that $39 million sounds like a bargain compared to say even $40 million.

To refresh my memory,  I opened the proposed 2015 budget that the district sent me in November of 2014. And right there on page 38 is a wondrously pleasant surprise.

Apparently the district did not really need $53.7 million after all.

By all forecasts, it is a made up number to overpay for everything they say they need.

On page 38, the district proposed putting a $45.3 million bond on the ballot.

So where and why did they think springing a $53.7 million dollar bond would be acceptable?

 

Remember at the debates when I said I was solely responsible for the greatest number of public records requests to SKF&R? And said the reason was because the district does not want you to know what is going on? The ONLY way to find out what is going on is to go to the meetings, listen to the spoken word, and then request the associated material.

Being told by ‘leadership’ what to say or reading abbreviated minutes report gets not even a tithe of the truth.

The 2015 budget was approved on October 28, 2014, with Commissioner Mark Freitas voting NEA, but the district is keeping the details secret from the public, (unless you put in a public records request) having, as of July 11, 2015 NOT posted the budget in plain view.

And now you know why.

In October of 2014 the proposed bond was $45.3 million.

To cover all the needs addressed in the April ballot.

When the district put forth a $53.7 million dollar bond measure.

 

So what happened?

Well, your prudent and diligent well paid administration and elected commissioners, charged with providing the best possible service at the most efficient cost to the taxpayers, went to many secret committee meetings and finally found another $8.4 million dollar ‘need’.  A nice 18% jump in spending in just a few months.

So, instead of being frugal and responsible, instead of being open and accountable, instead of demonstrating integrity over ineptitude, this ‘leadership’ team and tight group of friendly commissioners thought you would not mind a whopping $53.7 million dollar tax hike.

I am sure they merely overlooked it, but is that the type of leadership you can trust?

The administration and elected officials are so lacking integrity, basic open government practices and respect for the voters it is no wonder their bonds fail.

Oh, by the way. In secret-from-the-public meetings, guess what a few of the commissioners are cooking up now? The union contract is due for renewal this year. It will be signed, sealed and delivered prior to my taking the oath of office.

And I almost forgot. Earlier I made the bold assertion that leadership had simply kicked their new found safety bond items down the road as precious dollars were spent on non-essential expenses.

We have been hiring firefighters, read that as adding payroll, without adding stations or equipment. So the district can add extra firefighters to every fire truck and aid car. Because, although we have survived decades with a three person crew on this equipment, the firefighters put adding to their ranks above purchasing trucks on well respected and predictable schedule and far above upgrading fire stations to meet earthquake standards, which, if you believe the rhetoric, are all critical requirements needing tens of millions in tax increases now.

Or, as one person called it after reading the bond literature, If all the needs expressed in the bond are legitimate, they chose to put swelling their ranks and pockets above your safety, and above their own safety.

And because we have three commissioners that came from the ranks, and an entire administration that came from the ranks, it was an easy sell. After all, it’s not their money, is it?

They’ll just come to us, make a lot of public appearances which they are paid to attend, visit the schools on paid time, hand out stickers to your children while on the clock, pay their public relations guy to push feel good news stories and, because they call it for safety, we will again eagerly give them more money.
Are these the people you trust to choose and arrogantly endorse the next rubber stamp commissioner?

The most expensive option was chosen

By the way, mentioned in the special meeting was, if we can reduce the amount to say $39 million by sliding, again and again, some of the costs even further down the road, is it safe to assume we will come back to the voters a few years in the future for the difference of $14.7 million?

That was answered in the meeting. And the answer is NO. When the next bond measure is on the ballot, it will be for considerably higher. Several factors were mentioned. The logical one is quite frankly, costs will be higher. And the costs of putting two ballots to the voters is double the cost of one.

But also, the bond rate, which is good today, could be much higher in the future.We are told passage this year is critical to getting a good rate, and the future is unknown.

And of equal importance, it was spoken that, because we are delaying so many vital costs, we could find more things to put on the next ballot.

Indeed. If the voters approve $39 million today, why settle for a mere $15 million next time? We should at least break the $20 million threshold. And $24 million sounds like a nice number.

After all, it seems they like pulling numbers out of the air.

So, instead of working hard to take advantage of what was already on the ballot, and approved by over 57% of the voters. you leadership team decided to really take advantage of you. And make it sound so good you thank them.

 

Revenue at $1.50 per thousand of assessed value

 

Has anyone else been paying attention to the spiraling rise in the price of houses in our area?  Bidding wars taking housing prices beyond anything seen here? And, unlike the mortgage industry bubble of a few years ago, this one is predicted to be very stable, not founded on interest rates but on increased population, limited houses available and an ample supply of affluent buyers.

Why this matters.

Forecasts are for property values in King County to make double digit increases for the next few years. As they have been for the past few years. With no decreases foreseeable.

And since our district is primarily funded on $1.50 per assessed property value, the fire district will see a like amount of increased revenue. Money that can be spent on exactly what this administration says we need.

So maybe, they will not be back in a few years asking for another capital bond.

Or, they will do the same thing they did, spend their new-found riches on non-essential things, continue to hold secret meetings and kick safety down the road. Until you cough up another $25 million.

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Saying that the “voters will benefit from a commissioner who is not a career politician and who does not have ties to the current board”, the Federal Way Mirror split the endorsement – Fuller / Galland

http://www.federalwaymirror.com/opinion/313054701.html

 

 

And I think there was a good tone in the debate coverage

http://www.federalwaymirror.com/news/313052151.html

 

So, what say the voters about who advances to the general election?

 

 

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Not only did the debates sponsored by the Federal Way Mirror go extremely well, I am very appreciative that the Mirror made the wise choice to endorse me for Fire Commissioner.

 

This is a major step toward securing the election and you can be a part of it.

 

 

I have accepted unsolicited funds only to this point, but it is obvious my campaign will fail if I do not have money to pay for advertising to reach the voters.

 

Campaigns cost money, Advertisers, signs and flyers are expensive.

(Insert blatant plea for donations here)

 

Print the Contributors page, write a huge check for open government and add your name to my growing list of supporters.

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When more than two candidates toss in their hat for one position, we get to be on the Primary ballot in August.

So, yes, the Federal Way Mirror is hosting a debate Wednesday evening for those races with more than two candidates. And Fire Commissioner position 2 for South King Fire & Rescue is just such a race.

Showing your support for local conservative candidates.

Show your support for Jerry Galland.

Come to the debates July 8th at the Twin Lakes Country Club.

They start at 5:00 pm with fire commissioners at about 5:45-6:30

Here is an opportunity to support a conservative in local politics.

You can be sure the hand picked rubber stamp will have the room packed with supporters so I need your support and vote on the August 4th Primary ballot which could be in your hands as early as next week.

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Chill for a while and save a life.

Is the weather getting too hot for you? Need a cool place to go for an hour?

How about dropping by the local blood bank? There is a critical need for all types of blood and platelets.

It would be a real shame for a loved one to not have this easy to donate liquid of life.

And, free cookies, juice and smiles with every visit!!

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When Prop One was rejected in April, many reasons for the failure were mentioned. But a common thread was the $53.7 million dollar price tag.

 

And those voters I spoke with expressed a bit of surprise it was so high, saying they may have voted for a lower bond.

 

But none of the people said, since it was presented as everything was essential, remove this item or that expense.

 

So what will the voters think if the fire district presents a $39 million dollar bond (sounds better than $40, doesn’t it?) and cuts out several major suddenly-not-essential costs?

 

The reason I ask is that is exactly what was approved last night.

 

Kicking several essentials expenses down the road, spending millions to remodel an existing station for fleet maintenance now just to build a whole new one later. And removing the boat from public vote altogether.

 

 

Let me hear from you.

 

 

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It is real dry this year. This sign appeared on the corner and I just had to share it.

It is really a twofer. First, save the fine, second, save putting out some nasty fire.

Des Moines Fireworks

 

 

 

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Have you had the chance to drop by my VoteJerry.net campaign website yet?

 

Please check it out. Schedule of events and other informative pages.

Also, read the latest article by Bob Roegner in the Federal Way Mirror.

Sounds like he is feeling a bit bullied by some of the commissioners.

What do you think of the article?

 

Can you help spread the word?
Signs, advertising, printed materials and booths at local markets all cost money.
Donations accepted.
Vote Jerry Galland
POBOX 1843
Milton, WA 98354
Get Involved!

 

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