Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Campaign Season's Final Forum was a Great One -- Too Bad My Opponent Missed It!

Last night, I had the great pleasure of speaking with a group of high school students and parents at Evergreen High School. Teacher Patty McMaster and her “We the People” students put on a wonderful event that was attended by close to 200 people, with students from three area high schools. The students asked some great questions and really did a top-notch job of running the forum.

It's a shame my opponent missed it!

My opponent sent a substitute to the event, the employee who is out doing Mr. Pollard's doorbelling. Eric did a commendable job in attempting to represent his boss's positions. However, many attendees expressed disappointment afterwards -- saying they'd have preferred to actually hear from the candidate instead of a representative.

He'd have been wise to rearrange his schedule, as I did. Not just because of the great experience, but also because his staffer made a few statements that I hope Mr. Pollard will want to clarify for the voting public:

In response to school funding:
Pollard would support city management staff pay cuts in order to supplement state-funded educational programs at the District.

In response to the future of Joe’s Place Farm:
Pollard is “proud” of the 18th Street project, which according to the owner of Joe’s Place Farms, will destroy his business and, according to the residents of the area, rip the neighborhoods apart.

I did my best to help him out, explaining the differences between School and Municipal funding sources, and the actual ramifications of the 18th Street project. But I didn't want to speak for Mr. Pollard. Perhaps these are messages he wants to send.

After the event, I stayed behind to talk with a long line of students and parents – even chatted briefly with one of my former classmates from the Engineering program at Clark, who's now working for the District. As is usually the case, I was the last to leave the event!

We're all incredibly tired at this point in the campaign, but it was invigorating to talk with of these interested young people who really embrace the potential for positive change and are looking forward to helping build a stronger, more inclusive Vancouver.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I want to thank you for coming out to EHS last night to talk with our students. It was important for them to learn about and understand the issues facing this community.
At this point in the campaign, I know it would have been easy to say you were "tto busy". Thanks for NOT doing that and letting these newly registered voters know that THEY MATTER! Kudos to both you and your staff.
Patti McMaster
Evergreen HS