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LETTER: Candidate upset City of Burien excluded her from its Newsletter

[EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is a Letter to the Editor, written by a Reader. It does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The B-Town Blog nor its staff:]

Letter to the Editor:

This Wednesday, the City of Burien sent out a newsletter to its approximately 48,000 residents and on the front page of that newsletter, it failed to list me as a candidate for Council. The information for who is running in the Council election comes directly from the King County Elections website. So I find it strange that my name was excluded from the list shown in the city newsletter. When I called the city for an explanation, they couldn’t explain why this error had occurred and they refused to send out a mailing correction for their error.

Now the dilemma here is that the city does not consider the blogs to be valid media sources so they are only willing to correct their error in the Highline Times and on the city website. If we are to believe the city’s surveys, only 20% of the Burien citizens get their information from the Highline Times and only 33% of Burien citizens have a computer that they get their information from. So this error in the city newsletter of not listing me as a candidate puts me at a disadvantage to the other candidates that have been announced as candidates by the city. Please tell your friends, family and neighbors that I am still running for Position #3 on the Council.

As I noted earlier in the week, the city has made it very difficult for the candidates to know at which of the city events candidates are allowed to meet and introduce themselves to the citizens. I have been clearly told that this is not allowed at the Strawberry Festival, etc. Based on how election business is allowed in the city, it is no wonder that incumbent candidates have an edge over new candidates in Burien elections. If your name is missed in the city newsletter, thousands of citizens don’t know you are running because 80% of the citizens don’t read the Highline Times. See the Letter that I wrote this week— and my announcement to run— here [1].

One of the reasons that I decided to run for City Council was because I was concerned about how citizens and businesses were dealt with by the city, how information was not fairly disseminated to citizens, how government and Council activities were not transparent to the citizens and how citizen and business concerns were ignored by some of the Council members. These last two situations, which I have just experienced and written to the blog and newspaper about this week, are perfect examples of how citizens aren’t being communicated well with by the city.

While the City Manager has just announced he is leaving, there are still major changes that have to happen to the Council to improve service to the city and its citizens. If elected, I will work to improve the quality of communication that citizens are given in the City of Burien. As a taxpayer (who pays a lot of taxes in Burien), I am very disappointed in how I have been treated by the city. Initially, I was not even offered an apology by the city for their error. Citizens deserve better treatment. I would appreciate your vote in this election.

Debi Wagner
Candidate for Position #3 for the Burien City Council

[Have an opinion or concern you’d like to share with our ~90,000+ monthly Readers? Please send us your Letter to the Editor via email [2]. Include your full name, please remain civil and, pending our review, we’ll most likely publish it.]

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