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Category — Dick Bove

Seven out of Eight Ain’t Bad

Well all of my predictions came true, except of course Jane Knodell losing to Dave Rogers in Ward Two. I guess the “wake up call” I predicted Ward Two would send the Progs was hype. I’m a publisher. Sometimes I want things to be more interesting than they are. Dave Rogers ran hard, but at the end of the day Jane is still an asset, and the Progressive machine’s old north end juggernaut still reigns.

A word to Tom Licata and Linda Deliduka. There isn’t a “three-strikes, you’re out” rule in Burlington Politics, but if there were- you’d both be out. This year Licata pulled less than 33 percent and Deliduka pulled less than 25. Learn to take a hint people.

Here’s a Breakdown by vote totals and percents for the Burlington City Council races decided today. Congratulations to all the winners, especially Councilor-Elect Ed Adrian.

Ward 1 Special
Ed Adrian (D) 264 votes 47.0588235%
Dick Bove (I) votes 78 13.9037433%
Megan Munson-Warnken (P) 219 votes 39.0374332%

Ward 1
Sharon Bushor (I) 428 votes 100%

Ward 2
Jane Knodell (P) 214 votes 63.1268437%
David Rogers (I) 125 votes 36.8731563%

Ward 3
Tim Ashe (P) 345 votes 79.3103448%
Loyal Ploof (I) 90 votes 20.6896552%

Ward 4
Jim Holway (D) 514 votes 44.1580756%
Kurt Wright (R) 650 votes 55.8419244%

Ward 5
Rene Kaczka-Valliere (G) 131 16.6666667%
Joan Shannon (D) 532 votes 67.6844784%
Basil Vansuch (I) 123 votes 15.648855%

Ward 6
Tom Licata (I) 221 votes 32.3572474%
Andrew Montroll (D) 462 67.6427526%

Ward 7
Ellie Blais (I) 313 32.0696721%
Linda Deliduka (D) 239 24.4877049%
Craig Gutchell (R) 424 43.442623%

March 7, 2007   Comments Off

Pre-Election Extravaganza!

It’s BurlingtonPol’s
Pre-Election Extravaganza!
Predictions! Endorsements!
Rides! Games! Prizes!

Ward One- Bushor Forever.
Let’s get started with an easy “one.” Sharon Bushor is a tireless public servant with a good heart. She isn’t as efficient as Ian Carlton when it comes to running meetings, but then again- Ian’s leaving his seat after just a few years while Sharon’s been on the city council since 1945!

Ward One Special Election- Ed’s Got Cred.

Dick Bove was born in Burlington somewhere around seventy years ago. Megan Munson-Warnken arrived here from the west coast in 2004. That has to be the largest spread in Burlington residency among competing city council candidates ever. Although Megan is a fine person, she simply hasn’t lived in this city long enough to win my endorsement. Her residency as well as her business, an old north end cafe, are unproven Burlington commodities. Dick Bove is a great guy too, but his experience is not as representative of Ward One voters as that of Ed Adrian. Ed’s a lawyer who went to UVM and VT Law School. He’s got young kids and he works hard. Last year he came damn near to ending Sharon Bushor’s 62 year run on the council in a nail-biter that came down to the wire. This year he’s decided to take another crack at it in Ward One. Ed’s got “cred.” He deserves to win.

Ward Two- The Surprise

While one could make the argument Jane is “technically” more qualified, she’s been on the council forever and sheltered by academia even longer than that. Plus despite his mug shot, Rogers is no slouch. Ward Two voters are about to telegraph a serious wake-up call to the Progressives. Bob Kiss will listen.

Ward Three- Ashe to win Again

Loyal thought he might be able to “destroy the Progressives” as a Republican, but Kurt Wright put a “Quick-Stop” to that plan. Sorry Loyal, you know I consider you a friend, but the truth is the city will be better served if Tim stays put in my old seat.

Ward Four- The Wright Stuff

Poopsie and I each know Kurt, independently. She used to work at Kerry’s and I think I probably met him first as a guest on the channel 15 show he used to do with Matt Gardy called “Common Sense.” Kurt’s a hard-core New NorthEnder and pretty darned representative of his ward. He will walk to victory over Jim Holway, whom I’ve never heard of before.

Ward Five- Not Even Close

I don’t know who Basil is, but his website indicates he’s a single-issue candidate. Rene seems like a nice guy, but he needs to refine his understanding of what’s practical, realistic and relevant for a city councilor. Joan Shannon is a proven community organizer who knows how to “make the trains run on time” as it were. She will crush her opponents.

Ward 6-Montroll to Roll with about Sixty Percent.

“Together, our two current city councilors have 25 years of longevity. Continuing to vote these people into office while simultaneously complaining about the financial fiasco we’re facing is what Einstein defined as insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”-Tom Licata

Tom- you just called the people you want to represent ‘insane.’ You lost right there.

Ward Seven- Say Goodbye to Hollywood

Words and Music by Billy Joel

Bobby’s driving through the city tonight

Through the lights in a hot new rent-a-car

He joins the lovers in his heavy machine

It’s a scene down on Sunset Boulevard

Say Goodbye to Hollywood

Say Goodbye to my baby…

March 5, 2007   Comments Off

Sparks fly in Council Debates III

When we last left the Ward One debate between Independent Dick Bove, Progressive Megan Munson-Warnken and Democrat Ed Adrian- Bove was talking about how he tried to kill Urban renewal when he was on the council in the sixties, but then councilman (and later mayor) Francis Cain cast the deciding vote in favor of it.

Funny story about Frank Cain-When the cold war ended some friends and I cleaned out the bomb shelter in city hall and found these old reel to reel tapes recorded by mayor Cain to be played in the event of a nuclear war. You know- don’t panic, stay in your homes- that sort of thing. I didn’t hear the tapes but they came with written transcripts. Also in the bomb shelter? Saltines- lots and lots of saltine crackers in big metal canisters that were forty years old and rusting away. Nasty.

All right- let me write about this debate already-

Opening statements (continued):

Ed- living in Burlington since 1996. Concerned about “process.” Examples of issues where he’s had concerns about process: School Redistricting and YMCA. Wants to promote a family environment.

Megan- “Deeply invested in Burlington.” “Every day we are walking, driving and biking in Burlington.” “I can be a bold creative and very thoughtful voice for Ward One.”

Call-in question: What’s up with the openness of some local political caucuses and the closed nature of others?

Ed- SEI discussion has been too one-way.

Megan- Only a handful of people go to city council meetings.

Dick- Thank God for Channel 17.

Call-in question: What’s the role of the city council in the school budget?

Megan- I’ll know more “once I get in there and start asking those kinds of questions.”

Dick- Easy question. The council doesn’t have a role in the school budget. That’s what the school board is for.

Ed- That’s why we have a school board.

Question: Reaction to SEI Task Force?

Dick- We have to consolidate schools to keep taxes low.

Ed- If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Magnet elementary schools don’t make sense. Ward One voters usually approve school budgets overwhelmingly. Happiness of the children is very important.

Megan- SEI task force has started “wildfires” but I’m not necessarily opposed to their ideas.

Question: Waterfront?

Ed- Keep the ‘north forty’ open. Rip down the Moran plant.

Megan- Maybe retrofit Moran.

Dick- Tony Pomerleau wanted a high-rise on the 40, but Bernie stopped it. The waterfront is “Bernie’s field of dreams.” YMCA deal was suspect because CEDO people were on the YMCA board of directors, etc. Rip down Moran. Fixing it up would be “throwing good money after bad.”

Question: Main economic driver in Burlington?

Megan- UVM-FAHC, tourism and small biz.

Dick- Let’s bring football back. Keep people living downtown. That’s beautiful. Reduce bureaucracy at city hall.

Ed- Let’s look beyond CEDO.

Question: Zoning Rewrite?

Ed- Very important process but hard to make it interesting for people.

Megan- Frustrated with zoning process. “Five years is a long time.” (Note- Megan Munson-Warnken has only lived in Burlington about three years. Unless you happen to know that, it might sound like she’s been watching the process for the last five years. She hasn’t.)

Dick- Owners of historic houses in Burlington are getting totally screwed by a myriad of complicated regulations. (Teacher and Athena Club Chess Guy Bill McGrath recently testified to the city council regarding just this.)

Closing statements.

Blah blah blah. Ed announced his blog and actually gave out his cell phone number. That’s incredible. I’ve never seen another candidate do that. Jerry Brown announced 1-800-426-1112 a lot in 1992 (a number he’s used for subsequent campaigns) but Ed gave out his personal cell number. That’s a clear signal he will be an accessible and engaging councilor if he wins the election.

Debate winner: Ed Adrian.

Next debate: Ward three incumbent Tim Ashe faces independent challenger Loyal Ploof. In a nutshell- Tim crushed Loyal twenty million to zero in their debate. Sorry Loyal. Tim was extremely articulate and clearly has commanding knowledge of the issues. Not to mention his positions are totally spot-on. Loyal…not so much.

Debate winner: Tim Ashe.

Coming Monday- I tell you who should win this year and why… Stay tuned!!

February 28, 2007   Comments Off

Sparks fly in Council Debates II

I love Roman Numerals but I really don’t get why clocks use IIII instead of IV for four. It doesn’t make any sense. Life is full of little quirks it would have been impossible any for one person to design. I gotta get rid of my cat. That thing is just a ridiculously dirty ball of fur. Every day he leaves his disgusting muddy paw prints all over my bathtub and I’m constantly picking up wads of his matted fur the size of mice. Then there was that time I found a real dead mouse behind Koko’s bed. It was a gift from Howard Moses. That’s our cat, and he gets no pseudonym protection like Poopsie, Koko and soon-to-be-Yanna. His real name is Howard Moses, but we call him “HoMo” for short.

Wait a minute. What was I talking about? Oh yeah- those debates from last week that I took notes on- I was going to write them up last Tuesday, but of course got too caught up making the photo collage and pushed it off- then the storm hit, and life swept me further down the river and I never even watched any more debates. Now I’m going to hastily grind out the story of the two (one and a half) I did watch, a week late. The product will be shabby, but at least it will exist. That’s what makes this blog one of Burlington’s Premier Online Political Gossip Rags. The fact that it exists.

Technical problems prevented video for the first few minutes of the debate between the three candidates (Ed Adrian (D), Dick Bove(I) & Megan Munson-Warnken (P)) running in the special Ward One election to replace Ian Carlton. Carlton, an attorney who is leaving the council halfway through a two year term is the current city council president.

My notes begin with Dick Bove saying he tried to kill urban renewal in 1965, but Frank Cain (who would be mayor a few years later) cast the deciding vote in favor of it…

…Ok that’s enough for tonight. I’m going to watch Leno with Poopsie. I’ll finish this later…


February 22, 2007   Comments Off

Progressives to Field W1 Candidate

I received a tip today that local activist and cafe owner Megan Munson-Warnken (Photo Right) will be the Progressive candidate in the special Ward One election being held on Town Meeting Day. The winner of the race will fill the seat being vacated early by Democrat Ian Carlton. I am still trying to reach Munson-Warnken for comment. She will face Ed Adrian who won a tight nomination battle on last Thursday to become the Dems standard-bearer in Ward One.

Today was the deadline for folks to turn in their nominating petitions at City Hall. I was hoping for Elections Director / City Clerk Jo Lamarshe to email me the official list of candidates by tonight, but it looks like I’ll have to wait until tomorrow.

Rumor has it that Martha Lang who promised an Independent run after losing to Adrian in the Democratic caucus, has withdrawn her ballot-petition. Another runner-up from that caucus, Dick Bove, has been spotted collecting signatures for the race and may appear on the ballot as an Independent.

The entry of Munson-Warken into the special W1 race will bring the number of contested council races this year to four of the eight being held. The other contested races are in Wards 3, 5 and 7. All of the odd numbered wards will have contests this year…. developing story…

…Wait a minute… This just in… Loyal Ploof has dropped out of the Ward Three race. Briggs has the story

January 30, 2007   Comments Off

Ed Adrian Wins W1 Dem Caucus!

Ed Adrian W1Ns…Post Revised Updated Enhanced Extended…as of Saturday Morning…

Ed Adrian Beat three other Democrats in the special W1 caucus Thursday night at the Burlington School District central office on Colchester Avenue. The meeting was convened to choose a new Democrat to run for the seat being vacated early by current Democratic Ward One councilor Ian Carlton. Carlton is the current president of the city council… more after the photos…

Hmmm… As usual I’m up later than is reasonable. I’m tired and a touch cranky, but this is my fake job and I’ve got to fake do it. So as usual it’s nothing but straight-line narrative with no creativity whatsoever. All short-cuts all the time. What do you people want from me? And don’t try to pretend you’re not reading this, because you are!

I’m just going to retrace my steps. I get there. Ed Adrian and Karen Wingate are hanging around outside. I take some pictures. I go inside. I say hi to Brendan and Maurice. Folks were checking voters in against the city’s voter list and giving them ballots. I walk past the check-in to the caucus room. I sat near Doug and Colleen Montgomery of N Prospect Street, owners of the Speeder’s on Church Street. They tell me they heard about the meeting from Ed, but are undecided and waiting to hear from the candidates. I get up and say hello to Marc Awodey former W1 Dem nominee and the JP who married me and Poopsie at Mark and LG’s camp. He says we should pass the 9/11 item on the ballot- not because he believes in conspiracy theories, but rather so the nation can get past such notions. “We need to pass this through the body politic like a kidney stone.” he said.

Heading back to my seat near the Montgomerys and behind Ed, I see Ian Carlton and his family standing. I offer my chair but they refuse. It’s a standing-room only event. I counted roughly 52 adults and 10 children. Contrast this with the original Dem Caucus on the seventh, when the Ward One contingent was just Ed alone- glass in hand, jesting “Ward One is meeting at the bar!”

So I ask Ian a few questions. He said it was only after announcing his decision to step-down that he spoke with Ed Adrian about what Ed’s plans might be. He talked to Ed, he said, because Ed was the last Democrat to run in that ward. Carlton said his main concern about leaving the council in the middle of his term was that the seat might remain unfilled, leaving W1 constituents with less representation. After speaking with Adrian he was relieved to know there would at least one Democrat willing to step up and take his place…

And then the meeting began…(And I’ll just tick through each item on the agenda…)

1) Call To Order- Judy Rosenstreich (City Committee W1 Chair) called folks to order.

2) Election of Caucus Chair- Rosenstreich is nominated and elected to chair the meeting.

3) Election of Caucus Secretary- Jarred Wood nominated Maurice Mahoney and Mahoney was elected to be the secretary and take notes.

4) Remarks from Chair re: procedure- Rosenstreich announced that attorney John Leddy seated to her right was there as the parliamentarian. She then said that the bylaws of the Dem’s city committee state the winner must have a majority, either on a first ballot or by instant-runoff. She said that since it wasn’t clear to her if these bylaws applied to ward Caucuses, she was throwing them out the window and allowing for a plurality winner were it to go down thus.

Unfortunately her whole explanation on this was probably moot for everyone there except herself and the three vote counters as she would later refuse to divulge the final vote total to Briggs, me, or anyone. Lame. I have it partly anyway: Adrian 29-Wingate 20-Bove?-Lang?. Don’t ask me how I know that. Even including the other candidates’ votes, I think Ed won a majority. I overheard Rosenstreich justify to Briggs her decsion to withold the total. She said it was because now was “the time for the party to come together.”

I’m too tired to keep going with this tonight… time to sleep…finish later…zzz…

(Thursday ends, then Friday happens, now this post will be published after midnight Saturday morning. I’m just going to hunker back down to my notes. I read Peter Freyne has cancer. I wish him well. Friday night and it’s freezing outside. Saturday morning.)

4) (Continued) …Rosenstreich closed the meeting to new voters at 5:45pm. Two minutes after that two young couples came in from the cold and there was confusion at the door. Ed Adrian made a point of order to allow more folks into the process. The parliamentarian agreed such a motion would be acceptable. It was so moved, seconded and unanimously passed on a resounding voice vote. The stragglers were allowed to vote.

5) Nominations for One-Year Term to Burlington City Council- Maurice Mahoney nominated Ed Adrian. He made a three minute speech beginning with thanks for Ian Carlton’s service and ending with great praise for Ed, someone he said is familiar with both “the benefits and the problems” of living near UVM.

Todd Schlossberg nominated Karen Wingate. He called her “compassionate, caring, smart and thoughtful.” He said she “understands there’s a reason we have two ears but only one mouth,” that she asks questions not in a “prosecutorial manor” but in a way that really listens. I don’t know what type of lawyer Schlossberg is, but I’m guessing he’s not a prosecutor.

Dick Bove nominated himself. He said he was elected in 1963 to the Board of Alderman at the age of 23, which made him the youngest alderman “until the voting age changed to 18.” Later in conversation he would admit to having confounded my run for mayor at age 18 with my councilship four years later at age 22. Before he knew it was me he was talking to, he tried to remember the kid’s name. “Hayroom Badoobeeyoom or something” he attempted. “Wait a minute,” I said “you’re talking about me.” I asked if he was related to Bove’s restaurant. “I am Bove’s Restaurant” he said with an understated but unmistakable pride. I told him how much Bove’s means to me. I’ll tell you too.

I’ve been going to Bove’s since I was a baby. Some of my earliest earliest memories are of the beautiful murals of Venice on the east and west walls. The idea of water roads was unbelievably fascinating to me when I was two and three years old. I remember a nice man at the register who gave me a handful of straws to play with. Who knows? Maybe it was Dick. When I was that young my family’s next door neighbor was an incredibly old woman named Mrs. Kenny. Mrs. Kenny’s brush with fame came in her younger years when she knew “Buffalo Bill.” My mom used to take me and Mrs. Kenny on these dates- first to Brigantes farm stand in Colchester, then back to Burlington for these lunches at Bove’s. This is all coming back to me as I write this. Unfortunately, I haven’t really been going to Bove’s much since December of 2001 when I started running on the theory that I’m wheat and gluten intolerant.

Finally Martha Lang nominated herself. Let’s just call her the “Howard Beale“candidate. Except instead of “I’m as mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore!” she said “Somebody has to stand up and say enough!” She promised to run as an Independent, regardless of the caucus outcome. “I’ve got signatures and signs printed!” she said. In general she’s totally totally freaked out about the hospital and UVM. I didn’t quite catch exactly why.

6) Remarks by Council Nominees- They went in alphabetical order. Ed first. He said “I have a great devotion to public service. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s in my blood.” and went on to describe what he said would be the pillars of his council focus. I. SEI and redistricting. He said (and I’m paraphrasing here) the current SEI discussions seemed too much like a monologue and not enough like a dialogue. II. Library. “Give it the full resources that it needs.” III. Community Relations. Ed said he saw himself as a “mediator, moderator, intermediary.” IV. Quality of Life. Ed said that except for dorms on campus, “high and medium density housing is simply not appropriate in our ward.”

Dick Bove waived his speech and yielded his time.

Martha Lang made a short speech which she wrapped up by saying “it’s very important that you get to know me if you want to have a future in this city.”

Karen Wingate spoke last. “I understand we are moving from a big town to a small city.” she said. Noting that she was the acting CAO (acting Treasurer) though the last mayoral election, she said ” I believe I have the respect of most, if not all of the councilors.” She began to run through an ambitious agenda- increase the policy making role of the council, making the school and municipal budgets “more tightly aligned” creating an office of senior citizens’ affairs (In 1987 we had just started The Mayor’s Youth Office. Twenty years on Burlington’s demographics have shifted. Many of us are elderly. Office of senior citizens’ affairs is a great idea.)…improve relations with the state…

I thought to myself- this woman would bang her head against a wall as councilor. She’s way too ambitious and would soon discover she had far less power than she did as acting Treasurer.

7) Appointment of Ballot Clerks- Rosenstreich picked Colleen Montgomery, Mike Long and Sandy Wynne to count the ballots. They agreed.

8) Election by Australian Ballot- Everybody voted. Now that I think about it, an IRV wouldn’t have been that hard to do. Just rank up to four choices by writing the name and 1, 2, 3, or 4 next to it. Counting would be easy too. You know… I did hear Rosenstreich mutter something about having ‘tried IRV in a city election,’ or something. It sounded like she was worried about its complexity and may still actually want to scapegoat IRV for the Democratic candidate’s loss in the mayoral election last year. Of course that’s pure speculation on my part.

9) Pass the Hat- It seems like the Dems don’t miss any opportunity to raise money.

10) Announcement of Caucus Election-A couple minutes later Rosenstreich announced Ed won. I already told you she wouldn’t give us the score.

11) Democratic Nominee’s address to the caucus- Ed thanked the caucus for their nomination and turned his eyes towed town meeting day. “I am gonna win!” he announced.

12) Motion that the Ward I Democratic Committee be empowered to fill any vacancies in candidates for other Ward offices before March City Elections- Now, there is obviously another vacancy in Sharon Bushor’s race, so I don’t know why there wasn’t a general announcement then and there seeking volunteers for that. With less than a week until the petition deadline and with everyone standing right there, it seemed to me like a good time to recruit. Call me crazy. Perhaps there should have been a motion that the Dem committee be empowered to not fill any vacancies.

We still have yet to see if the Progs run anyone against Ed Adrian. I’m still betting no, but I’m open to surprises. Stay tuned.

January 26, 2007   Comments Off