Jack Block Jr. officially announces his bid for re-election to Burien City Council
Jack Block Jr. on Tuesday (May 28) officially announced his bid for re-election to the Burien City Council.
“Burien’s citizens have an important choice to make this election: maintain the present dysfunctional status quo, or return the Council’s focus to the real needs of Burien’s citizens,” Block said in a statement.
Here’s more from his announcement:
“In the last election, Burien’s citizens trusted me to work in their best interests. I’ve worked hard to repay that trust:
- Voting NO on annexation, when the county tried to balance its budget on the backs of Burien’s citizens.
- Saying NO to the City Manager’s proposal to raise taxes when there were adequate financial reserves to maintain city services.
- Saying NO to City staff’s proposal to extend our current solid waste contract, when putting it out to bid would reduce rates and result in more city revenue.
- Pushing to bring City Council focus to the lack of economic development and address the high number of empty storefronts that line our streets.
“Unfortunately, the current majority of the City Council and City Manager have vacated their duty to citizens, and continue to pursue an agenda that is far outside of the needs and desires of our citizens. Burien has real problems, and instead of addressing those, too many Councilmembers have allowed themselves to be diverted by issues that are low priority or opposed by voters:
- Despite a 65% vote against it, the current City Council majority continues to push for annexation, at a tremendous cost to Burien residents in tax dollars and in the use of staff time to promote the issue
- Rather than representing all the citizens of Burien, the current City Council majority is proposing to divide the city into districts, introducing the ugly specter of ward politics.
- Rather than listening to the voices of our citizens, the current City Council majority has refused to even consider discussion of an elected mayor, accountable to the voters, rather than a ‘Gang of Four’ councilmembers.
- The current City Council majority wasted an opportunity and lost federal grant money that would pay for more Burien Police officers.
- Instead of doing their jobs of setting policy and ensuring that staff carries it out, too much latitude has been given by the current City Council majority to the City Manager’s agenda.
“Because I am a blue collar worker, a Longshoreman and a former Teamster, I understand how hard it is to earn a buck and how much harder it is to save a dollar. I’ve brought that approach to represent “The People’s Voice” on the City Council. In my no-nonsense manner, I treat taxpayer dollars as if they come out of my own pocket, and I have fought vigorously for things that matter to our residents and Burien’s future:
- The issue of annexation runs like a cancer through Burien; it is time to cut it out, to remove North Highline’s potential annexation designation
- To focus on the needs of all of Burien by putting aside the concept of wards
- To end the CARES contract and establish a professional animal control facility with trained animal control officers
- For a public vote on changing Burien’s government to an elected mayor
- For more Burien Police Officers
- To refinance the City Light debt from the First Avenue undergrounding, which would save Burien taxpayers $300,000
- To refinance other city debt, saving Burien taxpayers many more hundreds of thousands of dollars
- To end the utility rate disparity that costs Burien rate payers much more than Seattle
- To respect private property rights while protecting our shorelines and environment
- To build a recreation center to keep our kids safe and off the streets
- To bring Burien city staff priorities and focus back to city projects
“One example of the savings I’ve brought to the taxpayers was by going “paperless”. As an example, the council information and documentation packets of the May 20, 2013 City Council meeting were 619 pages each, requiring 23 reams of paper. When the City of Gig Harbor went paperless, they saved taxpayers $40,000 a year. Yet I am the only Councilmember to go paperless. The little stuff adds up and I will continue to fight to save every dollar.
“It is time for the rebirth of Burien.
“I’ve worked hard for the people of Burien. I’m asking the voters of Burien to return me to office so that I can continue to do so.”