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Midyear scorecard...how well did your city council perform?


by fredo
on 8/1/2010 @ 8:49am
Here is my list of highlights for the year so far:

Pacific Plaza tenancy issue BAD
Luzon teardown BAD
Raises for city employees BAD
Botched council appointments BAD
New cars for city employees BAD
New furniture for city employees BAD
Clear Channel digital billboards BAD
Arizona immigration involvement BAD
Museum of glass bridge fence BAD
Cheney stadium design fiasco BAD
Dome used for monster truck shows BAD
Design for Lemay museum BAD
Foss waterway hotel development progress BAD
Taxpayer involvement in McMenamins parking garage BAD
Solutions for B&O tax problems BAD
Parking meters downtown BAD
New pavement in front of Fredos house GOOD

Maybe you have other issues or evaluations. If so, let's hear 'em!


by NineInchNachos on 8/1/2010 @ 9:32am
Arizona immigration involvement GOOD
(federal judge seems to agree: unconstitutional)

Parking meters downtown GOOD
(its the 2hr meter time limit that is retarded... should be unlimited!)

by Jesse on 8/1/2010 @ 10:04am
My take:

Pacific Plaza tenancy issue: BAD
Luzon teardown: Unavoidable. Did you see the interior shots?
Raises for city employees: BAD
Botched council appointments: Good. Saved reputations of countless applicants by being reviewed privately
New cars for city employees: Only a fleet manager knows.
New furniture for city employees: BAD
Clear Channel digital billboards: Good and BAD
Arizona immigration involvement: Neutral.
Museum of glass bridge fence: BAD
Cheney stadium design fiasco: BAD. Left a ton of money on the table by not moving it to a location where it could be surrounded by apartments, condo, and other businesses.
Dome used for monster truck shows: With increased oversight --- good.
Design for Lemay museum: GOOD
Foss waterway hotel development progress: BAD
Taxpayer involvement in McMenamins parking garage: GREAT! The future tax revenue will pay for this investment ten-fold.
Solutions for B&O tax problems: BAD
Parking meters downtown: Good if it's the first step toward a REAL market based parking system.
New pavement in front of Fredos house: GOOD. Lots of new pavement everywhere!

Let me add...
Lack of streetcar plan: BAD
Celebrating a still defunct MM Bridge opening: BAD
No real plan to return shopping to DT: BAD
Allowing no use on vacant DT lots: BAD
Only one DT LID project at a time: BAD
Viewing Pacific Avenue as the holy grail of streets DT while ignoring potential of others: BAD
No plan for military housing DT so GI's can go to UWT on the GI Bill: BAD
Tacoma as a low income/criminal dumping ground: BAD

This could go on forever...

by fredo on 8/1/2010 @ 10:35am
Jesse, good topics as well.

other topics:

$700K state money spent on temporary davita parking lot BAD
handling of berm/beam transit issue BAD
Mismanagement of Crystal Judson Center costs city thousands BAD
City continues raiding city pensions to fund day-to-day operations BAD
City considers funding failed Reconciliation Park project BAD
Jake Fey elected to office and immediately prepares to jump ship GOOD

by Marty on 8/1/2010 @ 2:11pm
Fredo,
Please double check your statments:

"Mismanagement of Crystal Judson Center costs city thousands BAD"

The employee in question did not and has not worked at the CJC.


And several of the items you listed happened before the current Council was in place. (Luzon, Pacifc plaza and others)

by fredo on 8/1/2010 @ 2:59pm
Marty, If I'm in error on these items I apologize and stand corrected.

The city recently settled a claim with a gentleman who alleged that a city employee interferred in a custody dispute. According to the news story linked below the person involved in the dispute, Gloria Fortsson has "stayed on the city payroll" I would say this is BAD.

www.thenewstribune.com/2010/07/11/125973...

The Luzon was demolished in 2009 so I will retract that evaluation. Sorry about that.

The problems down at Pacific Plaza certainly started before this year but I don't think they've been resolved. Have they?

by Marty on 8/1/2010 @ 3:21pm
False.

The victim went to the CJFJC for assistance. At that point she was referred to the City of Tacoma's domestic violence advocate.

Ding 'The City' if you wish, but the Crystal Judson Family Justice Center was not part of the ongoing advocacy.

The Crystal Judson Family Justice Center is a separate entity supported both by the County and the City. It is based on the Family Justice Center National model.

by Marty on 8/1/2010 @ 3:34pm
Pacific Plaza allowing tenancy issue was last December.
As was pay raises and other issues your list. ( berm/beam )

By looking at your list, your ideal leadership would have done less or nothing and in some case we can agree on that, but the Council does do things and is often judged by issues far removed from their control.

If you ponder you will come with more positives, but they are not as interesting.

by fredo on 8/1/2010 @ 3:36pm
The Judson Center may be a "separate entity" but was involved in the claim paid by the city. Here's a quote from the investigation:

"The Judson center caseworker soon called in China Fortson, records show."



Read more: www.thenewstribune.com/2010/07/11/125973...


by fredo on 8/1/2010 @ 3:57pm
Regarding the issue of compensation for city employees, the council has approved pay raises or other compensation on at least 3 occasions this year. January 27, 2010, May 4, 2010 and most recently July 28, 2010 (ordinance 27821).

Regarding this discussion, I really just wanted to get people talking about what's going on in our city, especially as it relates to our city council. I would expect council members to be appreciative of any feedback, especially a midyear scorecard!

People are not required to support my evaluations, the feedtacoma navigation allows anyone to post their own thoughts. If someone likes what's going on at city hall, they can even say so!

by Marty on 8/1/2010 @ 4:00pm
The victim went to the CJFJC for assistance. At that point she was referred to the City of Tacoma's domestic violence advocate, China Fortson.

She did not and has not worked for the Family Justice Center.

This may be surprise to you, but sometimes the TNT makes mistakes or may not be clear in their reporting.

by fredo on 8/1/2010 @ 4:13pm
Marty this really boils down to a distinction without a difference.

The CJFJC referred the woman to a domestic violence advocate wrongfully. She wasn't the victim of domestic violence. This referrel was made in error and was made by the CJFJC. This eventually led to a huge lawsuit against the city. The Judson center didn't cause the problem but they definitely got the ball rolling.

RE reporting errors in the newspaper. Whose job is it at the city to post corrections? If corrections aren't posted in a timely manner, then of course the readers assume the story is correct as reported.

by jenyum on 8/1/2010 @ 8:45pm
I bet Fredo would leave the City Council alone for a bit if they did something to change the B&O tax.


by Crenshaw Sepulveda on 8/1/2010 @ 10:35pm
Like every good business person I'd assume fredo would be passing the B&O on to the customer.

by Erik on 8/2/2010 @ 12:29am
Ribbon Cutting at Amocat Cafe:Good:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=8f4j8W2sOok

and

www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwoJc2JDiM4

Foss waterway hotel development progress: Good
Arizona immigration involvement: Neutral.
Food Carts: Good
Taxpayer involvement in McMenamins parking garage: Good
Parking meters downtown: Basically good but there but the times limits and over-breadth are bad.
Museum of glass bridge fence: BAD, but the mistakes were made many years ago.

by fredo on 8/2/2010 @ 7:58am
I bet Fredo would leave the City Council alone for a bit if they did something to change the B&O tax. jenyum

Heh heh, feedtacoma readers will be among the first to know if this ever happens. Don't hold your breath. The city labor unions have been riding around on this cash cow for 50 or 60 years. If you look back at the era with no B&O tax Tacoma was actually a prosperous city, with busy neighborhoods and streetcars.


"Museum of glass bridge fence: BAD, but the mistakes were made many years ago." Erik

The city council is charged with duty to constantly improve our city including addressing yesterday's problems. By failing to act it becomes their problem. IMO :)


by Erik on 8/2/2010 @ 8:26am
The city council is charged with duty to constantly improve our city including addressing yesterday's problems. By failing to act it becomes their problem.

Yes, but unfortunately, I believe that the MOG holds titled to the disputed bridge area, not the city.

by fredo on 8/2/2010 @ 8:59am
"I believe that the MOG holds titled to the disputed bridge area, not the city". Erik

Well that's interesting. The city doesn't have title to the state of Arizona either but that didn't prevent the council from squandering hours of meeting time on an entirely irrelevant anti-Arizona campaign.