I will no longer be posting on this blog. The focus is a little too narrow. Instead I’ll be posting on my person blog space at SteveLFerguson.blogspot.com I haven’t been too happy with the WordPress format and hope Blogger will be a little better. Hope to see you there.
New websites are out! www.VoteNayiri.com was unveiled early last week. The website lists endorsements, positions, as well as a link to contribute. Key endorsers include Councilman Paul Krekorian, State Senator Carol Liu and neighboring Assemblyman Portantino. This is defintely a strong showing out of the gates.
Another website has gone up recently. The website of Republican Sunder Ramani. http://www.RamaniforAssembly.com is clean and sleek. The lack of competition on the Republican side of the aisle has served him well.
Okay add one more to the brawl…Nayiri Nahabedian has announced her candidacy for the State Assembly. Nahabedian, a member of the Glendale Unified School District Board of Education, brings a new perspective to the race. While both Westall and Nahabedian are both educators, Nahabedian has served the Glendale School District in an administrative capacity. This administrative experience will prove useful throughout the campaign.
I had a recent opportunity to interact with Ms. Nahabedian at the Burbank ANC Annual Christmas Dinner. She is both personable and well versed on the issues. Tired of the same old, same old, in Sacramento, Nahabedian hopes to bring a new level of energy to the office.
Personally, her experience on the Board of Education is a big qualification for me. It is one thing to run on ideas it is another thing to run with a track record of making things happen.
This is going to be an interesting race.
For those of you who don’t know, I have been working on Assemblyman Paul Krekorian’s campaign for the Los Angeles City Council. At the end of a five-month stint with the campaign, the team has come up victorious. The campaign itself was both impressive and beautiful, in retrospect, and it was an honor of a lifetime to be a part of. More on that later…but I will tell you it wasn’t easy.
Since then Burbank has been in the business of banning cat declawing, losing a Superintendent, and possibly removing Civil Service Board Members…All I can say is lovely.
When it comes to the loss of our Superintendent, I must say its a bittersweet thing. I met the man and thought he had great vision for our district. However, I did later learn that his leadership style was a little too confrontational. What really put me off was his proposed goals for the district. Yes, the district should set annual goals but, the goals should be constructive and achievable.
As a part of the Superintendent’s goals he planned to mandate A-G Requirements. A-G Requirements set out which high school courses must be taken and passed, before graduation, in order to be accepted to a CSU or UC. The implementation of this goal would have killed classroom-based extra-curricular activities (i.e. choir, band, yearbook and ASB) and other vocational electives for non-college bound students due to lack of time. As a result, you would have seen a decrease in attendance and increase in dropout rates because the elective classes that keep some of our students in school, would have been facing the chopping block.
I think now is the time to be supportive of our Board of Education. They had no way of knowing this man’s leadership style. Happy to hear we’re moving on from this and wish the Board the best of luck in their search.
To the Civil Service Board…There is no reason to merit removals. Yes, they made a very controversial decision, but it was a decision that was based in logic. Could someone out there disagree with the decision they came to? Sure. But, that doesn’t merit their removal. Their removal, should it move forward, would severely undercut the independence of boards and commissions and would keep the type of discussions and disagreements that are vital to a city’s growth to a minimal.
On another front, expect me to be writing more about the upcoming Assembly race for our district. It’s going to be a blast.
I can’t express how frustrated, upset, hurt and flat-out devastated I was yesterday when I learned about the loss of one Burbank’s finest, to his own hand. After hearing about it yesterday, I set down the phone and I broke down. There is absolutely no reason this should have ever gotten this far. My sincerest thoughts and prayers go out to Sergeant Gunn’s family and to all the members of the Burbank Police Department
This isn’t about politics folks. A man’s life has ended because we, as a city, failed to provide the right venues to file and address personnel complaints (both from internal and external sources) in a professional manner. Instead, slaps on the hand were delivered and incidents reported were swept under a rug.
We as city need to consider some pretty substantial reforms to restore the public’s trust in this municipality. Frankly, I’m beginning to believe we need an elected Police Commission with the authority to investigate any and all complaints lodged against the department. That means subpoena powers, the ability to review department protocols and confidential documents, and finally the ability to recommend an officer’s dismissal, if necessary, to the Civil Service Board (which could be appealed to the council).
Either way, I don’t know how we as a city can ever say we have learned from this whole mess without systematic reform.