LETTER: ‘North Highline Unincorporated Area Council Appears to be a PAC’

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Letter to the Editor:

The North Highline Unicorporated Council Appears to be Political Action Group(s) that hides under a non profit status…

So who really is the NHUAC? Are they the informational community non profit that they have claimed to be or are they the Political Action Group/machine that now involves the vote4burien,org site and the People For Burien PAC or are they all of these? The public has the right to know who this group is. Right now, the NHUAC appears to be a pro annexation Political Action Group(s) that has not registered with the State but is hiding under a non profit status.

The North Highline Unicorporated Council (NHUAC) applied in 2000 to be a non profit in the State of Washington. On the NHUAC application, Jerry Robison/Attorney at Law filed as their agent. As of 2012, Jerry Robison, current Burien City Council member, continues to be listed as their agent with the State through his law office address. As a non profit, the NHUAC is not allowed to enter into political activities and campaigning. However, their recent postings and statements in the media as well as their testimony at public meetings are clear political statements advocating annexation.

At the White Center Jubliee Days, the NHUAC was passing out materials about the two libraries (White Center and Bouvelard Park) claiming that the libraries would be closed if Area Y did not annex to Burien. They failed to identify on the flyer that they were the group funding the flyer. The Public Disclosure Commission, (PDC) ruled that the NHUAC was acting as a Political Action Committee (PAC) and issued a warning to them. In spite of this warning, the NHUAC, has continued to act as a PAC and has not registered with the PDC.

The King County Library Board (KCLS) has never stated that these libraries would close if annexation did not occur. This is the statement recently made from Julie Brand/ Director of Communications for the KCLS, “…at no time has KCLS stated that libraries would close as a result of the annexation. Our commitment to serving the White Center (and Boulevard Park) community remains steadfast as it has since 1946.” October 24, 2012.  Both the NHUAC and the Burien City Council have continued to use this red herring, false library closure argument to hype annexation to the voters. The NHUAC has publicly claimed that the PDC never sent them a warning letter.

In a recent letter to all of the local media sources, the NHUAC has gone so far as to claim that there is a state law that requires the Area Y/White Center/North Highline to annex to a city and for that reason urges voters to vote for annexation. There is no law that requires Area Y to annex to a city.

In meeting with other service agencies in White Center/Area Y, the NHUAC has told these agencies that the NHUAC is only an informational group-non political. It has urged the other service agencies not to take a political position in this election by claiming that the NHUAC is not taking a political position. However, the NHUAC has taken a loud public position on annexation.

So who is the NHUAC really and who do they really represent? In an editorial to the blogs several months ago, this question was discussed in a letter to the editor, http://www.whitecenterblog.com/2012/03/28/letter-nhuac-represents-views-of-very-few-people-who-live-in-area-y/. The group appears to represent the views of very few residents in North Highline.

Now in the most recent posting put out by the NHUAC, Barbara Dobkin, the president of the NHUAC claims that she is now speaking for the vote4burien.org website http://b-townblog.com/2012/10/31/report-pro-annexation-signs-being-posted-in-illegal-spots-in-north-highline/#comment-27358 [EDITOR’S NOTE: Barbara Dobkin alerted us to this information as a private citizen, and we have since removed the acronym NHUAC from that post at her request at her request]. The vote4burien.org website is paid for by the People For Burien PAC. This PAC has only one listed officer, Stephen Lamphear for 2012. Up until 2011, the officers were Jerry Robison through his law offices, Liz Giba, (his legal assistant and a current North Highline Fire Commissioner) and Mr. Lamphear as the treasurer. In a recent political ad supporting annexation in the Robinson newspapers that included the NHUAC, the ad was put in and paid for by a non profit status purchase.  Keep in mind non-profit groups get a discount and PAC’s do not.

– Debi Wagner

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17 Responses to “LETTER: ‘North Highline Unincorporated Area Council Appears to be a PAC’”
  1. John Poitras says:

    Thank you for posting this information Debi.

    To anyone not totally biased its obvious that the NHUAC has been acting as a PAC.

  2. Brent says:

    Debi Thank you for the good laugh. It is very obvious that you do not know anything about NHUAC. Maybe sometime you should attend a meeting and actually talk to someone from NHUAC. I know you love to write long letters making it look like you know what you are talking about but as usual you have made many mistakes. If I pointed out each error in your writing, you and your toady John would just ignore them anyway.
    Heres a thought, Deby, maybe sometime you should actually investigate what you are talking about and maybe you would not be so wrong with your facts.
    OK, John and Cover, it is time for your name calling and attacks which happens every time somebody disagrees with the anti annexation people.

    • John Poitras says:

      Go ahead and point out the errors Brent.. we would be happy to debate or refute your claims.. But you never do… because you pro annexation folks are long on striking like snakes but never providing any specifics.. We have NEVER ignored legitimate objections to what has been posted IF someone has courage and integrity enough to identify exactly what they are disputing.. But you are like the most of the rest of your gang at the NHUAC or should i say NHUAC PAC long on mudslinging and short on FACTS! Maybe you have pro annexationesia?

  3. Concerned says:

    Show us the letter! Show us the arithmatic on your $400!!! Put it on your web!

    We have seen the breakdown of Pro-annexation math. show us your math!

    • John Poitras says:

      Wheres the breakdown of the pro annexation math concerned (concerned about someone knowing who you are apparently) ?? No one has seen it but you and I doubt you have either.

  4. Flashdog says:

    All I have to say is, WOW! That was a very informative letter. Thank you, Ms. Wagner for the large amount of time it must have taken to track down all that information and compile it for us — along with references that we could read for ourselves. I do not live in Area Y, so I will not get to vote on this issue, but if I did, your letter would play a big part in my decision making. The information you stated for us is only verified by the fact that the only rebuttal anyone offered was an ill mannered sneer from someone who couldn’t even spell your name correctly.

  5. Ghost of Maplewild says:


    Thank you for this info. Why has nothing been done about this? We can complain all we want here on this blog but until we find the right persons to take on this issue we are beating our heads against a wall. The other member of the Burien city council are allowing a few of their own to participate in the fraud and are doing nothing about it. And at this point it is too little too late. And once again the City of Burien cares not for the current citizens of Burien. They all have been more focused on future residents.

  6. Jack Block Jr. says:

    Live in North Highline and wondering how to vote on annexation? Here’s a few things to ponder:

    Your taxes are going to go up for, at best, the same level of service.

    The County will be dumping a $77 million capital backlog on you and the rest of the citizens of Burien.

    The tab for providing public safety services to the large number of tax free subsidized housing units in the North Highline area will switch from the county to you and the rest of the citizens of Burien.

    Still think its worth it so you can have a “voice” in your affairs? Consider this: The majority of the Burien City Council voted to go ahead with annexation despite the overwhelming opposition of Burien residents. You’ll have your voice, but it will fall on deaf ears.

    Vote No!

  7. Brent says:

    Consider this, Mr Block, You are on record solidly supporting annexation. That is until you realize that you are up for re-election and you are now pandering for the anti-annexation vote. You know that the city council overwhelming approved annexation without your vote so you were safe in voting NO so you could tell the anti annexation people, I supported your cause so vote for me.
    Jack, over the years you have become more and more a politician and less and less like the man of integrity that your father was.
    Show me your facts that the overwhelming majority of the citizens of Burien oppose annexation. Every poll that has been done shows that the majority of citizens don’t care. You are sounding more like John and Debi every day when you quote those “facts” that are nothing more than the opinions of people who live around the lake.
    Next you will be calling yourself and “expert in government affairs” and the toadies will all jump on board.

    • Debi Wagner says:

      Do you realize Brent that your suggestion that Jack has changed his position, which is false by the way,presupposes you believe the majority of Burien residents oppose annexation? I’m waiting for you to also recognize that Burien is a patsy in taking on something neither King County or Seattle wants to have anything to do with because it is such a financial drain.

  8. Ghost of Maewild says:

    Jack has more integrity than any other council member. He consistently speaks his mind and speaks for the citizens of Burien. He is consistently belittled and scolded by the “senior” members of the council. I trust Jack with the facts. Not you.

  9. John Poitras says:

    Brent your are full of it .. Do you even live in Burien? Your post is false, misleading and frankly slanderous.
    Par for the course for the snarling curs that make up most of the kool- aid drinking pro annexation gang.

    If you call a 4 to 3 vote OVERWHELMING then thats typical of the false and misleading propaganda the pro annexation pack pushes.. Oh btw .. Jack was one of the 3 council members voting AGAINST ANNEXATION so your statement that he was solidly FOR annexation is a lie.

    I will be supporting Jack Block for re-election and so will the vast majority of city residents who understand he is NOT a rubber stamp for Mike Martin unlike 4 of the current council members which will not be re-elected if we have anything to say about it.

    Yes Jack is correct> the overwhelming majority of Burien residents OPPOSE annexation. Your BS about a poll is just that BS.. there have been no credible polls on annexation because the city disregarded the residents request for a referendum or an advisory vote on the subject.
    HOWEVER an unknown resident on a shoe string budget Bob Edgar blew away Mr. PRO Annexation himself Gordon Shaw who was well funded and supported by his fellow toadies on the council in the last election>>>so thats better proof than any imaginary poll you can come up with Brent.
    And YES Brent… Jack is a heck of a lot more of an expert on governmental affairs than you are.. Who are you anyway Brent..? Someone that has no integrity whatsoever thats for sure.
    Slandering from the shadows appears to be your modus operandi… you have zero credibility with any resident that has an ounce of discrimination in their judgement and your last post proves this beyond any reasonable doubt. I suggest you come up with a new alias because “BRENT” has outlived his usefulness.

  10. Jack Block Jr. says:


    I work hard to serve my constituents, and the if the facts counter my previous opinion, I’m going to go with the facts. Every time. What you call “pandering” I call making a learned and considered opinion, i.e. my job. And I stand up for that opinion, that’s why my name is on this post. Those are things my Father taught me about being a public servant and being a person of integrity.

    I wouldn’t consider a 4-3 vote in favor of annexation overwhelming. The only thing overwhelming is that 3 of the 4 councilmembers who voted in favor of annexation ran unopposed at their last election. As Alexis de Touqueville said, “In a democracy the people get the government they deserve”.

    I’m aware of only one poll of Burien residents, the bi-annual “How are we doing” City push poll. If the question had been properly asked, “Should Burien annex North Highline-White Center”, instead of, “How do you feel about annexation”, I think the results would have been a lot different. I’m not much on polls anyway. I walk up to people, ask if they live in Burien, tell them I’m a councilmember, and ask how the city is doing. When I ask them about annexing White Center, they generally get upset and say it’s a bad idea. Generally runs about 4 out of 5 folks. Kinda meets my definition of overwhelming.

  11. Peter Trethaway says:


    If you want to accuse a council member of lacking integrity.. Then I suggest you look no further than Jerry Robison. He was legal council for the NHUAC of which he was involved in founding.. but keeping in character he denied that and refused to recuse himself from the vote to proceed with an annexation attempt in the city council.

    He narrowly won re-election mainly in part because NOWHERE on his campaign literature or his website did he indicate he was a strong supporter of annexation as Gordon Shaw was.. Gordon at least had the integrity to declare his support for annexation.
    But not Jerry! He has taken up the torch and used scare tactics to push annexation like the lie he likes to repeat that if you do not vote for annexation by Burien then KC will force annexation upon you without a vote and you will end up with Seattle which is totally false..
    So before you cast aspersions on people of integrity look to take the plank out of your own eye concerning your former pack member Jerry Robison who really does lack integrity and is a major enabler of Mike Martin.

  12. Soczette says:

    Jack I look forward to becoming a citizen in the city of Burien, so we can rally to vote your ass out of politics.

    • Jack Block Jr. says:

      Soczette, my ass is rather large. I hope you take the time to learn proper lifting techniques so you can avoid a disabling injury such as a ruptured disc or hernia. Remember, use your legs, not your back.

  13. Barbara Dobkin says:

    To Debi Wager,
    Can you please identify the agencies and the name of the individuals that you claim I supposedly met with. I would like to contact them and find out why they would make false statements about me and NHUAC to you. I await your response.

    FYI – NHUAC is registered with a general non-profit status. We are not a 501 C3 or 4 or designated as a charitable organization. We do not engage in fund raising activities. We have no restrictions on supporting campaign measures.
    It would be good if you actually knew facts before making claims.

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