See the map of the November 5, 2013 advisory votes election results here.
|What are freeholders and what do they do?
Freeholders will make up a 15 person committee to do one thing: propose a new customized form of government for Clark County. Electing freeholders does nothing more than select the 15 citizens who will make up the committee. They will work together for one year and put a “home rule charter” on the November 2014 ballot for all Clark County voters to accept or reject. Then they go home. Their work is done. That charter will define the rules and roles of every elected office in Clark County government.
If the voters in 2014 reject that charter, then nothing will change and Clark County government will continue the same way that it has for the last 124 years as defined by our state constitution. If approved, the new customized government will take effect and a new election will fill any newly defined elected positions.
|Why customize our government?
Any time we consider a huge change such as changing the way that we govern ourselves, we should ask ourselves: What problem we are trying to solve? Because our present form of government works so well, Clark County citizens have rejected home-rule charters multiple times. It is efficient, effective, low cost, manageable, flexible and citizen-friendly.
|What difference does it make who we elect as freeholders?
Voting for those who want to make major changes will likely result in the citizens rejecting the charter that will appear on our 2014 ballot. The minimum changes would be to add the ability for citizens to place initiatives and referendums on the ballot in future elections.
Initiatives create new policies if passed. Referendums repeal existing policies is passed.
A Home rule county does not have any more power or jurisdiction than we do now. Those powers remain limited and fixed by our state constitution. Six of the 39 counties in Washington are charter counties. The six county advisory votes on this ballot already demonstrate our ability to place issues on the ballot to inform our county commissioners of the will of the people.
One of the most dangerous charters that could be proposed is one that leaves the door wide open to amendments by a simple majority vote in future elections. Any proposed charter should require a 2/3 majority vote by the people in a General Election in order to amend it. Otherwise, we open Pandora’s Box to make huge changes and for special interest groups to vote for special taxes and benefits for themselves. The charter that gets proposed will all depend on the freeholders that we elect.
For recommended freeholders, see Freeholder.info
|Advisory Vote #1 – CRC Light Rail: – Yes
Voting Yes says that the voters should be asked for permission in a county-wide vote before spending millions on any Light Rail project in Clark County. Voting No means the politicians have blanket permission to keep spending millions on projects like the CRC Light Rail Tolling project without voter approval.
If you object to C-Tran signing the secret contract with TriMet to fund Light Rail in violation of their promise and in violation of our 2012 Proposition One election that said No to Light Rail, then vote Yes on this advisory vote.
|Advisory Vote #2 – C-Tran Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) – Yes
This ballot measure is almost identical to advisory vote #1 above, except this one covers the son of light rail, Bus Rapid Transit. Voting Yes says that the voters should be asked for permission in a county-wide vote before spending million on any Bus Rapid Transit project in Clark County. Voting No means the politicians have blanket permission to keep spending millions on Bus Rapid Transit projects without voter approval.
Like advisory vote #1, if you object to C-Tran signing the secret contract with TriMet to fund Light Rail in violation of their promise and in violation of our 2012 Proposition One election that said No to Light Rail, then vote Yes on this advisory vote.
|Advisory Vote #3 – Support a new toll-free East County Bridge – Yes
Voting Yes on this ballot measure says that the people in our community support the very specific proposal published on page 112 of the voters’ pamphlet. Voting Yes does not authorize any money to be spent. The proposal is not merely an idea. It is a project proposal designed by Kevin Peterson, an expert and certified global transportation architect who specializes in these kinds of projects.
That proposal includes specifications and line-item cost estimates. The total cost must truly be less than $900 million and the project must remain toll-free. In short, the cost and finance plan must conform to the proposal in order for it to be supported. Otherwise it would do more harm than good by triggering tolls on our two existing bridges across the Columbia River. The renderings and cost estimates are provided at EastCountyBridge.com. Citizens can discuss this project on the East County Bridge Facebook page here. Community participation can refine it to make it better.
|Advisory Vote #4 – the CRC Light Rail Tolling project – misrepresented as an I-5 Bridge replacement project – No
Voting No says that the people reject the CRC Light Rail Tolling project that is misrepresented as an I-5 Replacement project. It’s the same old project with a counterfeit cover to fool people into voting for the CRC boondoggle. It’s simply an edited counterfeit of an earlier draft of the East County Bridge proposal with the light rail prohibition deleted and text from the CRC added. It’s the same old multi-billion dollar Light Rail project with Oregon controlled tolls misrepresented as a toll-free project at a fraction of the real cost.
The CRC proponents that put this on the ballot broke faith with the citizens by wasting $170 million and refused to halt even after the people voted to reject it last year. They are the same ones that voted to sign a contract with Portland TriMet to make Clark County citizens TriMet’s new tax base without a vote of the people. You can watch the CRC proponents sell out Clark County citizens to Portland TriMet here. Do not fall for their deception. Vote No.
|Advisory Vote #5 – West County Bridge – You decide
I have removed my comments in opposition to this ballot measure out of respect for a friend, Sharon Nasset, who has worked hard to promote a possible version of a West County Bridge called the ThirdBridgeNow project near the railroad bridge one mile west of the I-5.
|To vote for new leadership that will respect the vote of the people that already said No to Light Rail in our last General Election, to elect leaders who will honor the promise that a vote of the people would be provided to approve any means to fund Light Rail operation and maintenance, to oppose the CRC Light Rail Tolling project, Oregon controlled tolls, and to vote against Portland TriMet making Clark County citizens their new tax base for Light Rail, see the following list:|
| For Vancouver City Council:
Vote for Bill Turlay instead of Mayor Tim Leavitt
Vote for Micheline Doan instead of Jack Burkman
Vote for Jeanne E. Stewart instead of Alisha Topper
Vote for Frank Decker instead of Anne McEnerny-Ogle
| For Battle Ground City Council:
Vote for Lyle Lamb instead of Michael J. Ciraulo
| For Camas City Council:
Vote for Vanessa Amundson instead of Melissa Smith
| For Ridgefield City Council:
Write in Tim Wilson instead of voting for Ron Onslow
| For Washougal City Council:
Vote for Dave Shoemaker instead of Rodney P. Morris