Sunday, July 19, 2015

Political Desk: Kent

Here's where we get serious. I am more than willing to be glib about other positions, from the standpoint that there are other news sources that will give countering opinions. However, when we get down to the granular nature of local city positions, it stops being a joke. For some people, this blog may be the only mention these candidates get. The Times recommendations stop at the southern border of Renton. I don't think the Stranger recognizes that the world exists south of Georgetown. The Muni league will get down to Federal Way but nary a word on Kent or Renton. And the Kent Reporter doesn't even get up to our neck of the woods near Panther Lake. So I need to be a little more responsible, quote outside sources a bit more, and a little less of a wise-ass than usual.

Just a little.

Position 1 is the only position on the Kent City council with more than two candidates, so it will be the only one to speak of here. There are three candidates for the position, - Bailey Stober, Tina Burdell, and Hira Singh Bhullar. You can find the vimeo of their statements here. A fourth candidate is on the ballot, but has dropped out.

Bailey Stober has run before, and has been recommended by this blog, particularly in the face of the disastrous previous election where Kent elected a guy who ended up serving two weeks of his term before resigning to serve 43 months in jail for stealing from his own mother. Mr. Stober comes from a strong background working with the state, and to be frank, he was robbed in the last election, and Stober's election would have saved the City Council a lot of egg-spattered faces.

But, there is another piece of the puzzle here. Mr. Stober has been plagued with PDC (Public Disclosure Commission) Violations in his last two runs. Compared to stealing from your own mother, this is small potatoes, but it is SOME potatoes, and the eye for details is something you need for running a local government. Mr. Stober comes heavily endorsed, but I have reservations

Tina Budrell is a Microsoftie who has established herself as a community activist with the North Park Neighborhood Council (which is just north of downtown Kent and the Commons). She has been extremely active in the community, and has a number of credits under her belt at the local level. The Lovely Bride got a robocall, but could not repeat anything that was said. Sigh.

Hira Singh Bhullar works for Starbucks as a software developer. Most of what I see from him is pretty much the "I appreciate the community and want to give back to it" that makes up a lot of local politics at this level. And I will be honest, that is really cool, and he has a good history of local volunteer work.. This is the place where people get their taste of retail politics and local concerns, and I appreciate his contribution. In addition, he sent me a mailer. We don't get a lot of mailers up here any more.

I appreciate both Mr. Bhullar's and Ms. Budrell's local commitment, but if backed into a corner, I will recommend Tina Budrell, if only for previous experience with local government. Now watch, the day after I post this, she'll be connected with an Emu-smuggling syndicate down in Puyallup.

More later,