LETTER: Debi Wagner responds to accusations by Andrea Reay
[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:]
To the Editor;
This letter is in response to the accusations that Andrea Reay and her Campaign Manager, Cindi Laws, have made against me to the Burien media sources (see The B-Town Blog coverage here) and the Public Disclosure Commission (PDC). While Ms. Reay and her Campaign Manager claim this was done in the interest of transparency, truth, and to expose hypocrisy, honesty and real facts were missed or overlooked in their complaint.
Cindi Laws contacted the media in Burien a couple days in advance of ever seeing my books to let them know that there was going to be a possible complaint filed against me. How could Cindi Laws, Campaign Manager for Andrea Reay have known about problems with my books without ever having seen them? Andrea Reay has never seen the contents of my books but relied on Cindi Laws, as a decision maker acting on her behalf, to decide that I was not honest, transparent and a hypocrite. Cindi Laws of Purple Mountain Advocates has received $1,350 to date from Andrea Reay for campaign consulting and decision making. During the inspection of my books, Laws continued to insist she was a PDC Compliance Specialist/ Expert. In my follow up conversation with the PDC, the PDC denied that Laws was affiliated with the PDC or an expert they used.
I have spent $2012.32 to this date on my campaign and have never tried to hide or conceal my donations and expenditures. Please go to the PDC site and note that Andrea Reay has spent $6,216.82 as of her August 1, 2013 filing with the PDC, 3 times more than I have spent and more than I will spend during my entire campaign. In reviewing the historical PDC records, it appears Reay has spent more money in this Primary Election than any other candidate in the history of a Burien election.
The cost of my robo calls wasn’t concealed and I reported to Laws that they cost about $200. In reality they cost $197 and I received the bill from the vendor in Portland, Ore. after Ms. Laws left my home. The calls costs 91% less than the expensive mailers that Ms. Reay sent out, destroyed no trees in their production and caused no damage to our air quality in their delivery to the voters. Robo calls are used by approx. 95% of the candidates seeking office in the United States and are environmentally friendly in their production.
My short video cost nothing. It was donated by a friend who is an amateur YouTube fan and it has no monetary value. The PDC has stated via phone that because of these factors there was no need to list this as an expense or in kind donation. However, it appears that the Treasurer of Andrea Reay’s campaign who prepares her reports to the PDC is a professional finance officer. He appears to be the Controller to the Seattle Opera Company and manages the $27 million dollar budget for the opera. It might seem that his professional services should be shown as an in kind professional donation to the Reay campaign?
Additionally, inaccurate assumptions and statements have been made about;
- How my signs are constructed and what materials were used. (Cindi Laws is mistaken about the materials used and had trouble believing the cost of the sticks was as low as it was. I explained I used recycled sticks from other campaigns and bought the rest on sale and I had the receipts to prove this,
- How many letters I mailed out to friends and neighbors (she notes I bought more stamps so assumes I sent more letters with more color copies and never made the mental leap to consider I have stamps left over and sent out thank-you notes)
- The UPS card method for making black and white flyers (cost effective two sided 4 cent copy).
The complaint about how the Highline Times ad department set up my online ad amounts to frivolous harassment that involved no concealed revenues, expenses or secret big donors. 90% of the donors to my campaign are Burien citizens or Burien small business owners. Only 38% of the donors to Ms. Reay’s campaign are Burien citizens. 62% of Ms. Reay’s donors are not from Burien.
Andrea Reay has stated that she is running for office because she doesn’t approve of divisive behaviors, wants to restore respect to Burien politics and can do this because she is a mom. Both Reay’s and Law’s complaint and media statements about me seem contrary to her reason in running for office and appear to be “swift boating in its most divisive form.”
I am a mother of seven children, a citizen of Burien, a musician, an artist, an author, teacher, community volunteer, neighbor, a wife, daughter, chauffeur, home owner, taxpayer, animal lover, farmer’s market shopper, clean sweep volunteer, financial professional and fiscal conservative. My spending on this campaign shows this. I have spoken up for citizens and their right to be heard before the council numerous times, actively campaigned against annexation and written and spoken for those issues that I believe will help Burien be the best city possible. I have served my community for a long time and deserve not to have my name and my family’s reputation damaged with false accusations/dragged through the mud over trivial, non factual complaints relating to sticks and type setting. The mini-reporting campaign method promotes campaign reform, reduced campaign spending by single candidates and is approved by the state. I would appreciate your support and vote on August 6, 2013. Thank you for your time.
Additional articles to read for perspective on these campaign tactics:
– Debi Wagner for Burien Council Position #3
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