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First 2009 Mayoral Debate III
Thursday, January 08, 2009
Well, the first mayoral debate is probably wrapping up around now. I haven't heard anything about the time of the event (8-10am) at the Main Street Landing Performing Arts Center being changed per my request. What a stupid time to hold the debate. Eight in the morning on a Thursday! Jesus. Why bother? Did the candidates even show up?

Did anybody go? Anybody know how it went?


Update- Event was live-blogged at the Free Press Here
posted by Haik Bedrosian @ 9:43 AM  
  • At January 08, 2009 12:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    WTF? Your comments thingy just hosed up on me. Grr.

    Anyway, the BFP livestreamed it on their website. I caught the beginning, but I had to jump off because I had to start school with the kids. I don't think they have it in them to watch a mayoral debate. (*Snore*)

    Maybe they will keep the video up.

    The time does stink, but it was done by the BBA during their annual meeting, or something or other.

  • At January 08, 2009 12:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    That's Burlington Business Association. And Burlington Free Press. For clarity. I got a little acronym happy there.

  • At January 08, 2009 12:21 PM, Blogger Haik Bedrosian said…

    Maybe they will keep the video up.

    That would be good. Thanks for dropping by Charity.

  • At January 08, 2009 1:50 PM, Blogger Unknown said…

    A debate on a Thursday morning isn't the brightest idea. Will there be any more debates? Hopefully they would be held in the late afternoon or early evening so that more people could attend them

  • At January 08, 2009 2:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    The debate was a great show case of the candidates. Bob Kiss tried to defend his record over the last three years, but it was clear that he had no credibility. Andy Montroll was, well Andy Montroll and did nothing to inspire hope in the democratic candidate. Kurt Wright gave a strong showing but but came off rather rude with his constant, baseless attacks on Dan Smith. Kurt clearly sees Dan as his biggest, and really only competition which is interesting to note. Dan Smith gave an extremely impressive and intriguing performance balancing his extensive knowledge while also laying out his clear vision for the city. Kurt tried to box Dan into a corner, labeling him as just an economic development expert, but at the same time gave Mr. Smith a ton of credibility on the single biggest issue in the race, which is clearly economic development. Kurt basically said Dan Smith was one of the most knowledgeable people on economic development in Burlington. Dan Smith's stock is clearly rising after this debate and it will be interesting how the other candidates respond to him after Dan took them somewhat by surprise in this debate, stealing momentum in the race.

  • At January 08, 2009 3:41 PM, Blogger Taylor said…

    Please relabel anonymous above as "Dan Smith's Campaign Manager"

  • At January 08, 2009 4:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Dzeneta, Emily, or whoever: Next time you can use 'he' or 'Dan' more rather than the full-name. That way it won't sound like you're trying so hard to boost name recognition.

    P.S. Your candidate did indeed kick ass.

  • At January 08, 2009 5:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I actually thought Kurt Wright and Dan Smith did a great job. Andy was a little "underwhelming" for me. I just didn't feel it with him. Kiss just doesn't inspire me either. He had his chance.

    Little confused on how I'm going to rank now. I was leaning towards Montroll but I guess I got some more research to do.

  • At January 08, 2009 6:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hey, There's an argument against IRV, it forces the intelligent voter into too many decisions.

  • At January 08, 2009 8:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I actually agree mostly with the "anonymous" comment posted before. All you have to do is watch the video and see for yourself how "underwhelming" Kiss and Montroll were. Dan and Kurt completely controlled the debate. Dan clearly had the best handle on economic development. I mean ask Kurt, he admitted Dan knew more about economic development than him. But I'm still wondering how much Dan knows about other issues outside of economic development (schools, pension, roads, etc). It is important to remember though that this was a forum based specifically around business and economic development. Kurt was all around very solid but lost me a couple times when he tried to say his hands were tied because he could only do so much as city council president. Actually Kurt your position is pretty powerful and you could have used it properly if you had wanted to in the last couple years. Also he said that the mayor did not really need to know the details of issues like economic development, the mayor only needs to manage the city properly and work with other people well. Hmmm, interesting take on being mayor. The funniest part of the whole debate though was when Dan said he had support from a broad coalition of people across the city including young progressives. Bob Kiss nearly fell out of his chair and had a heart attack. Watch it online if you can its hilarious. I don't think Bob was ready for all of the criticism that came his way during the forum. He seemed genuinely shocked whenever someone said something bad about him.

  • At January 09, 2009 10:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Mayor Kiss has done a great job quietly. Kurt and Andy need some quiet reflection time to think about the past and remember how they helped make a mess out of the city's financial affairs, and how Mayor Kiss walked into this mess, and three years later, we have no tax increase, still have essential services and a decent bond rating. As for Dan-O, what needs to be said about a one-trick pony in the pockets of moneyed interests? If the biggest issue is economic development, the Kiss administration has a great record....Take a look at the Kiss Administration's accomplishments (this is from the Kiss for Mayor campaign):
    Building a Sound and Sustainable City Budget

    • No municipal tax increase for the past two city budget years, while continuing to maintain essential services for streets and sidewalks, snow removal, Fire and Police Services, and Parks & Recreation
    • Increasing the City’s reserve fund, protecting Burlington’s future financial health
    • Capping spending growth in City departments to 3% or less
    • Proactively addressing the City’s pension fund issues
    • Despite budgetary challenges, maintaining the City’s high bond rating
    • Negotiated groundbreaking “fee for service” agreements with UVM and Champlain College, resulting in a fairer arrangement which lessens burden on taxpayers

    Economic & Housing Development

    • Received overwhelming support from voters to move forward on Moran Redevelopment Project, which will revitalize the north end of the Waterfront and invigorate the economy with jobs and other economic activity
    • Completion of Zoning Rewrite, with a balanced approach that encourages appropriate economic and housing development while maintaining essential character of neighborhoods
    • Modified agreement on Westlake Project will bring new downtown hotel to Burlington and substantial contribution to affordable Housing Trust Fund
    • Major City investment in Quadricentennial preparations which will be signature economic and cultural event in 2009
    • City’s Economic Development activities have exceeded goals in supporting creation and retention of jobs and commercial space
    • During Mayor Kiss’s tenure, Burlington’s job and wage growth has exceeded the state as a whole
    • Initiated development of Browns Court lot for affordable housing
    • City continues to support creation of affordable housing through housing development activities
    • Restoration of funding for Lead Program to reduce lead paint hazards in apartments and homes


    • Strongly supported and pursued Intervale land sale, which protects agriculture and passive recreation in the Intervale forever
    • Worked closely with all stakeholders to help resolve the Intervale Compost facility issues
    • Launched Low Carbon Diet-Kitchen Table Collaborative to encourage greenhouse gas reduction at the household level
    • Initiated rewrite of Burlington’s Climate Action Plan and set aggressive goals set for reduction of Burlington’s greenhouse gas emissions
    • Convened Mayor’s Stormwater Task Force which has worked to develop comprehensive stormwater ordinance and enforcement program to help protect Lake Champlain
    • Pursuing BED-based project which would establish innovative method of financing energy efficiency improvements and alternative energy projects for homeowners

    Citizen Engagement and Community Development

    • Established Citizen Budget Task Force, which has worked over the last three years to make recommendations for the City budget
    • Moran Redevelopment Project included extensive public outreach and involvement
    • Expansive and inclusive community selection process for Police Chief hiring
    • Numerous other opportunities for citizen engagement: Environmental & Energy Coordinating Cmte, Climate Action Plan process, Retirement Task Force, Stormwater Task Force, and Afterschool Cmte
    • Created “social equity” position for the Legacy Project
    • Reopening of Blanchard Beach at Oakledge Park, after years of closure for environmental reasons
    • Anti-graffiti efforts: increased fine for graffiti offenses and support of graffiti clean-up program
    • Creation of Myrtle Street Pocket Park through the Conservation Legacy Fund
    • Completion of Gosse Court Armory Project with several community partners; multi-use recreation center in New North End
    • Unprecedented financial support of City’s two senior centers and commitment to address their long-term sustainability
    • Bicycle and pedestrian safety initiatives with police department, DPW and Local Motion

    Addressing Burlington’s Infrastructure Needs

    • Created the first-ever City-wide process for prioritizing infrastructure projects
    • Initiated and successfully passed street bond and tax that will improve streets and sidewalks while saving taxpayer money in the long-term
    • Supported and helped pass BED bond that will improve electric reliability, raise revenue for the benefit of ratepayers, invests in alternative energy, and produces cleaner electric power for Burlington

  • At January 09, 2009 10:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Wow, taken right out of Kiss' website and Seven Days Blurt. Thank you Kiss Campaign Folks.

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