LETTER: Did candidates violate city’s rules at the Wild Strawberry Festival?
[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:
When one candidate running for a City Council position recently contacted the City of Burien about political booths for the Strawberry Festival, that candidate was told that no political campaigning promoting individuals, an issue or party was allowed from booths at the event. This was the city’s policy. The only thing that political groups or individuals could do from the booths was to provide general information to educate the public on things like where to vote or how to register to vote.
However, Joey Martinez, the 33rd Dems, 34th Dems and two potential Port Commissioners violated the city rules for the festival and directly distributed campaign materials for a specific candidate. None of these booths were registering voters or explaining rules for voting. City staff were at the festival and could easily have stopped this material from being handed out or closed the renter’s booth down. They did nothing.
This demonstrates what Dick West (Burien Citizen) has been speaking about repeatedly at Council meetings. The City of Burien makes rules and ordinances and then selectively enforces them for only some individuals or businesses. For other individuals and businesses, it enforces them vigorously. This is not how consistent, honest and transparent government works and it creates a general distrust and disrespect of the government and how it operates in Burien.
So my question is; what is the city going to do to those booth renters that violated the rules for booths at the Strawberry festival? John Creighton, Courtney Gregoire, Joey Martinez, the 34th Dems and the 33rd Dems?
If the city intends to do nothing about rules and ordinances, why make them?
If the city enforces them for only some parties then this demonstrates a clear prejudice in favor of some citizens and something doesn’t smell right about that. Also if the city only stated the rules to some of the renters and then neglected to post or give the rules to other renters or potential renters, the city needs to clear up how it does business during its events. I believe that this is the responsibility of Michael Lafreniere, Director of Parks and Recreation and it appeared that he and his staff did nothing about this issue during the festival.
The Council and city staff have a responsibility to make sure that ordinances and rules are enforced equally and fairly for all citizens, candidates and businesses.
– R. DeLorm
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