County candidates get their say in Gateway

If you don’t yet know the Multnomah County Commissioner
District 3 candidates, take a look at this article …

Shirley Smith, sales representative with The OUTLOOK, is presented the famous Gateway Rubber Chicken, in thanks for the paper’s help in supporting the Gateway Fun-O-Rama.

Story by Watford Reed; Photos by David F. Ashton
Five candidates for the Multnomah County Commission District 3 agreed on more things than issues about which they argued when they spoke to the 50 members of the Gateway Area Business Association last week.

The district stretches from Laurelhurst to Lents, explained the Candidate Forum’s moderator, David F. Ashton.

More open decision-making, inclusion of everyone – not just special interest groups – and respect for the environment were the keynotes of the candidates who spoke to the group.

Multnomah County Commissioner District 3 candidate Bruce Barclay.

The first to speak was Bruce Barclay, a commercial appraiser in the County Assessors Office, who criticized “loose management” of county business.

He also called for credits to foster energy conservation, and criticized officeholders who “make decisions behind closed doors because they think they know best.”

Multnomah County Commissioner District 3 candidate Roy Burkett.

Roy Burkett, a veteran of 20 years in the electronics business, called for “fresh, workable plans based on American ideals.”

“The county and city have been in the grip of special interests for too long,” he charged.

He has learned to work with groups that have sharply different outlooks, he said.  He also called for steps to lessen crime by repeat offenders and said requiring restitution is often more effective than the punishment.

Multnomah County Commissioner District 3 candidate Mike Delman

Care for everybody’s welfare — not only those “at risk” – was urged by Mike Delman, public affairs director for the Portland Habilitation Center, which trains and finds work for the disabled. He said he was a lobbyist at one time for the American Federation of State County and municipal employees for 29 years.

He declared, “when I worked at the county, our employees were proud to be considered the government of last resort.  I think that attitude has been suppressed and I will work to bring it back.”

Multnomah County Commissioner District 3 candidate Rob Milesnick.

Business can work with environmentalists, said Rob Milesnick, who forecast that “change is going to happen”, and promised to “work to make county government more helpful.”

He stressed the need for public safety, “including MAX”, and said he will work for better health care for everyone and streamlined health-care plans.

Multnomah County Commissioner District 3 candidate Judy Shiprack.

Judy Shiprack, a former Oregon State legislator of three terms, former teacher, and one-time deputy district attorney, said that at one time 30,000 arrest warrants were outstanding in the county. She suggested that the prosecutor’s office call the defendants the day before they’re due to appear in a hearing, as doctors offices call patients. She claimed that this alone would “save the county millions of dollars”.

Candidates answer questions
In answer to questions, Shiprack said the state business tax rate is too low, and that makes County business taxes too high.  This, in turn, drives businesses away from Multnomah County and the Gateway District.

Melisnick called for better relations between city and county and said, “Strengthening this is will strengthen the county.”

Delman said the area needs more “fair wage” jobs, as well as a fair share of public appropriations.  Decision-making should be “collaborative,” he went on.

Burkett said two thirds of criminals are right back in jail within two years of their release.  They need jobs, he said.

Berkeley promised to encourage growth of small business, and said he listens to voters, because, “I don’t have all the answers.”

GABA’s Secretary, and long-time Gateway booster, Fred Sanchez (center), stands flanked by Richard Kiely as well as Greg Zuffrea from Home Run Graphics.

Graphics seminar featured at meeting
Just before the meeting, GABA members learned how to get the most for their printing and advertising specialty dollars from Richard Kiely and Greg Zuffrea of Home Run Graphics.

“Good design will help you save money when it comes to printing a project,” Kiely told the group. “And, having a good marketing idea behind the design will help the printed piece do its job.”

Greg Zuffrea told the group how matching the personality of a company with the advertising specialties improves the impact of a promotional campaign.

For more information, see their informative web site: CLICK HERE!

Next month: Mayoral Candidates Forum
On April 11, candidates in Portland’s race for the job of Mayor will come by to meet folks in Gateway.

Be sure to arrive by 11:30 a.m. to be assured of a seat. Reservations are not required; guests are welcome. Other than buying your lunch, the meeting is without cost. It’s at JJ North’s Buffet, 10520 NE Halsey St. Reservations NOT needed. For more information, go to www.gabanet.com.

© 2008 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

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