Tag Archives: City Council

Burbank Dodger Night: Good Time Had By All

By Rick Assad Sports Editor

It’s likely there are few things in life more relaxing and enjoyable than spending several hours at a big-league baseball game.

Add that the game is being played at Dodger Stadium, one of the most beautiful, picturesque and iconic venues in the majors, the experience is magnified 100 fold.

For roughly 210 Burbank residents, that’s exactly where they found themselves because it was “Burbank Night” at Dodger Stadium.

It couldn’t have gone more splendidly as the National League West-leading Boys in Blue throttled the Cincinnati Reds, 5-3, behind Adrian Gonzalez’s three-run homer to right field in the fifth inning, Justin Turner’s sacrifice fly and run-scoring single, and recently-acquired Alex Wood’s five-hitter with three runs, three strikeouts and three walks over six and one-third innings as 43,407 looked on.

And because it was Friday night, it meant there were fireworks afterward, which everyone seemed to enjoy.

Start of School with Matt Hill -2© 2015 Ross A. Benson

Burbank Vice Mayor Jess Talamantes enjoys a Dodger Dog. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Jess Talamantes, Burbank’s vice mayor, accompanied by his wife Sandy, were in the stands more than a half hour before the first pitch.

The pair were nestled in the field section behind home plate where his brother Louis, owns season tickets for the last decade.

“I started coming to Dodger Stadium in the 70s when they had Ron Cey and Steve Garvey,” Talamantes said. “Later it was Fernando Valenzuela. There is a long history here and it began with Sandy Koufax, Don Drysdale and Maury Wills.”

Valenzuela, who won the National League Rookie of the Year and Cy Young trophy in 1981 after going 13-7, with 11 complete games, 8 shutouts, 180 strikeouts and a 2.48 earned-run average, now works as a Dodgers broadcaster.

Still beloved and fondly remembered, Valenzuela, a six-time All-Star, was busy taking pictures and speaking with fans in front of the press box before the game.

Talamantes, despite a hectic work schedule, tries to make it to Chavez Ravine, which opened in 1962 and has hosted an All-Star Game in 1980, numerous playoff and World Series games, as much as possible.

“I usually try to get to about 10 games a year,” he said. “I’d like to get to more games. What’s better than this? It’s beautiful and the weather is always nice.”

Start of School with Matt Hill -2© 2015 Ross A. Benson

Park & Rec Director Judie Wilke and husband Tom at the Stadium. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

In 2011 and 2012, Talamantes was Burbank’s Mayor, and was able to throw out the ceremonial first pitch in 2011 on Burbank Night. “That was the 100th anniversary of the city,” he pointed out. “That was a lot of fun.”

Judie Wilke, the Burbank Parks and Recreation Director and her husband Tom, were seated in the reserve section down the right-field line.

“We don’t go often, but we always make it to Burbank Dodger Night,” she said. “It’s always fun. My husband’s from Cincinnati. We had a good time because we were able to get together with people that we know.”

Wilke didn’t partake in the traditional Dodger Dog, but did eat soft-serve ice cream out of a pink Dodgers cap, while Tom had the same in a blue Dodgers cap.

Carol Mercado, who works in the Parks and Recreation Department where she is a supervisor, and her husband John, were also on hand. Mercado, along with the sports office staff, had a large hand in selling the tickets.

“I used to work in the parking lot at Dodger Stadium in the late 70s and early 80s,” she said. “It’s been about five years since I’ve been to the Stadium, and there have been a lot of changes.

It seems like it’s a lot more fun. It’s more family oriented.”

Start of School with Matt Hill -2© 2015 Ross A. Benson

Jason Dyer and family at the ballpark. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Mercado said she roots for the Blue Crew. “It was fun sitting with all the Burbank people,” she explained. “I’m a Dodgers fan. I had a Dodger Dog. They won and that was good.”

Jason Dyer, who works in the Parks and Recreation Department and is the Recreation Coordinator, was also in attendance. He said that he looks forward to the annual event.

“I’m an Angels fan,” he said with a laugh, “but I always come out to support the city on Burbank Night. I also like watching the Dodgers on television whenever I can.”

Another who made the drive to the ballpark is longtime Burbank resident Mike Nolan, who was casually walking through the concession area.

“I’ve been coming here since 1962,” Nolan said. “It’s close to Burbank. You take the 5 [Freeway] and you’re right there.”

When asked if he anticipates attending this game, Nolan said that he does. “You bet. I come every year,” he said. “I’m delighted to be here.”

One has the impression that they all were.

Burbank Couple Honored By City Council After Toddler Rescued From Third Floor Fall

Jennifer and Konrad Lightner were honored by City Council members, Assembyman Mike Gatto’s office and the Burbank Fire Department for their rescue of a three-year-old boy who fell from a third-floor window three weeks ago. The Burbank couple was presented with certificates of appreciation at the Burbank City Council meeting Tuesday evening, April 1.

During Tuesday nights City Council Meeting Jennifer & Konrad Lightner were presented certificates from The Burbank Fire Dept, State Assembly and City of Burbank for their acts in saving a 3 year old after a fall from a 3rd story window. ( Photo by Ross A. Benson)

During Tuesday nights City Council Meeting Jennifer and Konrad Lightner were presented certificates from the Burbank Fire Department, State Assembly and City of Burbank for their acts in saving a three-year-old after a fall from a third story window. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Most people saw the images here on myburbank.com first, in the initial report on the incident just after it happened. Chief photographer Ross A. Benson was on scene just after the serendipitous event to get pictures.

The three-year-old boy climbed out of a third-floor window on Sunday, March 16. The Lightners saw it all happening and jumped into action. Konrad threw a box spring the couple was carrying through the alley under the child and Jennifer called 911. Konrad caught the falling boy and laid him onto the mattress. Police and fire units responded following the dramatic call to 911.

Lightner Award @ C-C-3

Challenge Coin given to Konrad Lightner by Burbank Firefighter of the Year Eric Rowley. (Photo By Ross A. Benson)

Following the rescue, Burbank Firefighter of the Year Eric Rowley presented Konrad Lightner with his personal Challenge Coin for quick thinking and saving the toddler’s life.

Tuesday evening, the Lightners met with the firefighters who responded on the incident and Firefighter Rowley explained the purpose of the Challenge Coin, which goes back to the Civil War days and is presented from military personnel to one another for heroic deeds.

During Tuesday nights City Council Meeting Jennifer and Konrad Lightner were presented certificates from the Burbank Fire Department, State Assembly and City of Burbank for their acts in saving a three-year-old after a fall from a third story window Pictured with the Lightners are Firefighters who responded to the incident. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

During Tuesday nights City Council Meeting Jennifer and Konrad Lightner were presented certificates from the Burbank Fire Department, State Assembly and City of Burbank for their acts in saving a three-year-old after a fall from a third story window Pictured with the Lightners are Firefighters who responded to the incident. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Jennifer & Konrad Lightner showing the awards and Challenge Coin they received during Tuesday night Jennifer and Konrad Lightner with certificates at the City Hall. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Jennifer and Konrad Lightner showing the awards and Challenge Coin they received from city and state officials and the Burbank firefighters at City Hall. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

 

City of Burbank Night a Big Hit at Dodger Stadium

(L to R) Burbank City Council members Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy, Jess Talamantes, Bob Frutos and Vice Mayor Dr. David Gordon (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

(L to R) Burbank City Council members Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy, Jess Talamantes, Bob Frutos and Vice Mayor Dr. David Gordon (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

By Dick Dornan
MyBurbank Sports Editor

What an evening it was at Dodger Stadium Friday night. From the opening first pitch thrown out by Burbank Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy to the game-ending wild pitch that gave the Dodgers a 2-1 win over the Atlanta Braves in 10 innings, you could not have asked for more.

Mayor Emily Gabal Luddy makes the pitch. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy throws the first pitch (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Except for the spectacular fireworks show that followed the game and the home run blast by Los Angeles Dodgers rookie-phenom Yasiel Puig that occurred in game. It was a night to celebrate for all Burbankers in attendance.

On the City of Burbank night, the Burbank community was treated to a festive pre-game celebration and a well-played game shortly thereafter. Prior to Gabel-Luddy’s debut on the mound, more than 10 teams from the Burbank Little League circuit were recognized along the outfield track.

As Gabel-Luddy warmed up along the first-base line in foul ground, Vice Mayor Dr. David Gordon and fellow city council members Jess Talamantes and Bob Frutos watched in anticipation.

“I love it. It’s one of my favorite nights. Burbank Dodger night is one of my favorite events of the year,” said Dr. Gordon about the special City of Burbank tribute. “I love to see the people out here and I love to be out here in the atmosphere. It’s really an exciting evening.”

Vice Mayor David Gordon congratulates Mayor Emily Gabal Luddy at home plate after a successful pitch to home plate. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Vice Mayor Dr. David Gordon congratulates Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy after a successful pitch to home plate (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

When asked if he was ready to catch the first pitch from Gabel-Luddy, Dr. Gordon was as confident as a catcher would be.

“I will do my best to try. I am as prepared as I can be,” he said.

As for what kind of pitch to expect from Gabel-Luddy, possibly a fastball or even a curveball, Dr. Gordon chuckled and said, “she’s been doing that for years and I have somehow managed to survive all this time.”

Talamantes provided advice to Gabel-Luddy after throwing out the first pitch two years ago as Mayor of Burbank.

“I told her to just throw it up high and tell your catcher (Dr. Gordon) don’t let the ball hit the dirt. I told the Vice-Mayor to sacrifice your body and don’t let it hit the dirt,” said Talamantes, who was proudly wearing his Burbank centennial jersey, #100, given to him in honor of his big moment on the legendary Dodgers mound in 2011.

Mayor Gabel-Luddy is interviewed prior to the first pitch (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Mayor Gabel-Luddy is interviewed prior to the first pitch (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“It’s a great honor and a great opportunity to represent the city of Burbank. I was the centennial Mayor so I was very fortunate to be the Mayor at that time. It makes you feel great because the community is out here cheering you on representing the city I was raised in.”

Frutos, Burbank’s newly-elected councilman, took in his first Burbank Night as a member of the City Council.

“This is exciting. It’s an honor and I am very privileged,” Frutos said. “This is our community and we get to see a Dodger game and a fireworks show. We are very blessed.”

He predicted that Gabel-Luddy would throw a curveball but that Dr. Gordon was prepared to block the plate in case of a wild pitch.

The Dodgers' Yasiel Puig after hitting a home run to tie the game at 1-1 (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig after hitting a home run to tie the game at 1-1 (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

At 7:01 p.m., it was time for Gabel-Luddy to take the hill and have the honor of throwing out the first pitch. Nervous at first, she showed poise and confidence as only a 10-year pitching veteran would. Gabel-Luddy fired a fastball that caught the outside corner of the plate. Not on a bounce but on a line. Dr. Gordon caught it cleanly. Mission accomplished.

Dr. Gordon, Talamantes and Frutos clapped and cheered in support of Gabel-Luddy’s accurate throw. So did many of the Burbank citizens in the stadium.

“I’d say it was a strike. I felt great out there. What a thrill it was for me,” said the ecstatic Mayor of Burbank. “It’s the 22nd anniversary of Burbank Night and our community being here at Dodger Stadium. So can you imagine how thrilling it is being able to stand on that mound and throw out the first pitch?”

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Gabel-Luddy received a warm ovation from the stadium crowd. It was an impressive outing for the rookie right-hander. As fate would have it, Dodger rookies Hyun-Jin Ryu and Puig followed Gabel-Luddy’s lead in a victorious night for the Dodgers and the City of Burbank.

“This has been a great event going on for 22 years. It brings the community together just like we do in Burbank when we have functions and events,” Talamantes said. “We come here to enjoy a Dodger game and see fireworks so it’s even better. What I like about it is that it brings our community to an event that we can enjoy together.”

“It felt like being home again. I grew up on the Dodgers here. When they moved here from Brooklyn, my dad took me to my first game when I was probably nine years old,” Gabel-Luddy added. “It’s a great thrill to be here tonight and I can’t believe that 50 years later I had the opportunity to throw out the first pitch.

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“Thanks to all the community because we had a tremendous turnout tonight with all the kids from the leagues. I am looking forward to a great summer of baseball.”

So are we. Congratulations to the City of Burbank on an exciting and well-deserved night of recognition.

 

Burbank Volunteers Honored by City Council

The annual Burbank Older Americans Volunteer Service Award acknowledges outstanding Burbank volunteers who are 60 years or over.

On May 7, 2013, the Burbank City Council honored this year’s recipients:

Sandy Struble for her service at City Hall and the Joslyn Adult Center;

Sue Stimpson for her volunteer work at the Burbank Animal Shelter and YMCA;

Peg Setti, who is also a recipient of the LA County Volunteer Service Award, for her service to the Burbank Temporary Aid Center and St Francis Xavier Church.

Older American Volunteer Service Awardees honored at City Council Meeting (Left to right): Senior Board member Doug Halter; Awardee Sue Stimpson; Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy; Senior Board member Peter McGrath; Awardees Peg Setti and Sandy Struble; and Senior Board member Bill Anderson

Older American Volunteer Service Awardees honored at City Council Meeting (Left to right): Senior Board member Doug Halter; Awardee Sue Stimpson; Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy; Senior Board member Peter McGrath; Awardees Peg Setti and Sandy Struble; and Senior Board member Bill Anderson

Burbank on Parade Wants You to Help

Dear Burbank Community,

The Burbank on Parade Committee is in need of your support. The City Council will be discussing next year’s budget and deciding what to cut from the Parks and Recreation budget during next week’s council meeting.

In a letter received by the Parade Committee, it was stated that the City Council is considering eliminating the $10,900 it allotted for the 2013 parade. If this decision is made, it will cast an additional burden on the Parade Committee. The chances are great that if the Parade Committee does not receive the $10,900, which it needs to supply Burbank Police security during the parade, the committee will not be able to raise funds to offset this cost and the parade will be cancelled.

The Parade Committee struggled to meet the cost of the city-imposed barricades which totaled approximately $17,000, an additional expense that was a hardship for a nonprofit organization to raise.

That is why we look to you for support. We need members of the community — residents who love to attend the parade and those who appear in the parade, from organizations like Boy Scouts, YMCA members, Girl Scouts and businesses — to come to the City Council meeting on Tuesday night and voice the need to keep the parade alive. If you can’t make it to the meeting, please email City Council members to continue supporting the parade by allotting funds through the city budget.

Sincerely,
Carey Briggs
Burbank on Parade President

Hundreds Gather to Honor Former Councilman Dave Golonski

Several hundred joined together at The De Luxe Banquet Hall next to Burbank’s City Hall to give thanks and present gifts to outgoing City Council member Dave Golonski.

Dave gets thanked by one of the hundreds that stopped by for the occasion. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Dave gets thanked by one of the hundreds that stopped by for the occasion. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Burbank’s new Mayor Emily Gabal-Luddy, was the MC, inviting several guests to speak about their time serving with Dave Golonski. One of the speakers who served with Golonski was current airport commissioner Bill Wiggins, who shared several funny stories of their time working together.

He reflected on several of the great projects Golonski spearheaded, such as the Elmwood Focus Neighborhood. When approached on the council, he then met with gang officer Ed Skarvina, who told them the problems with the block, drug deals, shooting, robberies, etc.

Chief Scott LaChasse  holds a Golden Eagle that was presented to Dave Golonski from the Command Staff of The Burbank Police Department. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Chief Scott LaChasse holds a Golden Eagle that was presented to Dave Golonski from the Command Staff of The Burbank Police Department. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Golonski teamed up with the Police Department, Public Works, City Attorney’s Office, and Redevelopment, and when they were all done, the neighborhood was so safe that Council member Wiggins recalled he visited the neighborhood one day, driving his new convertible Jaguar.  When he returned to his car, which he left the top down, not a thing was touched. The neighborhood now is a model for cities across the nation.

Congressman Adam Schiff flew in from out of State to wish Golonski good luck and thanked him for so many projects he completed over his 20 years of public service.

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Then there was a video presentation of Golonski’s 20 years on the City Council – from the first argument at the podium with the then Mayor Robert Bowne – to pictures of him wearing a Santa Claus suit during one of the Burbank On Parades to get attention on a matter that was close to his heart. The video also had several former Mayors speak and former City Manager Robert Bud Ovurm, who truly felt that Burbank is a better place with Dave Golonski serving the past 20 years.

Dave Golonski with his grandson check out the yummy cakes during his thank you party.(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Dave Golonski with his grandson check out the yummy cakes during his thank you party.(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Proclamations were presented along with plenty of gifts, including an over-sized thank you card that everyone in attendance got to sign.

Golonski got the chance to thank everyone in attendance including his wife, Barbara Sykes and his family. He received a standing ovation as he ended and greeted everyone as they left.

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

David Nos Congratulates Winners, Thanks Voters

I would like to congratulate Mr. Jess Talamantes and Dr. David Gordon for their victories
on Tuesday night’s general election. It was a hard fought campaign and they deserved to
win. I would also like to express my appreciation for Mr. Golonski’s 20 years of service
to our City. Dave – you did a fine job.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank the many voters who selected me as
their candidate. You have my gratitude, from the bottom of my heart.

Lastly I would like to thank my wife Kimberley, Ron Sabatine, my campaign manager,
Mal and Linda Kelman, my treasurers, whose tireless efforts kept me positive and on
task, and Bob Frutos and Gary Bric for their unwavering friendship and support.

I have many more to thank and I am truly humbled by their faith in me. This has been a
rewarding experience and I am glad I was able to participate.

Thank you all,
David Nos

Gordon, Talamantes, Applebaum and Tabet Win Seats, Golonski Denied

After serving the citizens of Burbank for 20 years, voters decided on Tuesday to enact their own term limits and denied Dave Golonski, the current mayor, another four year term on the City Council.

Councilman David Gordan addresses guests at a victory party following the primary elections which he was reelected to another 4 year term. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Councilman David Gordan addresses guests at a victory party following the primary elections which he was reelected to another 4 year term. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Dr. David Gordon, who has long been seen as the nemesis of Golonski, was re-elected as the leading vote getter in the general election. Along with Gordon, Councilman Jess Talamantes was also given another four year term.  Both were also elected to their first four year terms in 2009.

Gordon arrived at City Hall around 10 p.m.  Gordon saw his re-election as vindication of his positions that often are at odds with the other council members, especially defeated councilman David Golonski.

It was apparent from the first returns of the night that both men were established as early favorites with only the early vote having Talamantes over Gordon until about the half way night when late votes dropped off Tuesday then put Gordon on top.

Burbank Councilmen Jess Talamantes is joined by his wife and kids watching the results at DeBell Clubhouse. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Burbank Councilmen Jess Talamantes is joined by his wife and kids watching the results at DeBell Clubhouse. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Talamantes arrived at City Hall from the Club House Grill where he commented on the attack ads against him that were sent out by the United Food Workers Union. “The UFW messages were seen as ‘outside’ interests trying to influence our election,” said Talamantes, adding, “Burbank people don’t like those kinds of tactics.”

It would appear that the ads backfired.  Instead of turning voters against the incumbent councilman, they may have caused a backlash that got him more votes.

Challenger David Nos, gained ground after the Primary election, but still fell short, falling just 202 votes behind Golonski in a strong fourth place showing.

Unlike the Primary Election, City Clerk Zizette Mullins ran this election since she was not involved, having been elected outright during the Primary.  Results from previously mailed ballots started to come in right after 7 pm and results came at a much quicker pace then before, where all precincts were first put together, verified, and then counted, which took close to 2 am.

The winners of Burbank's Primary Election L/R David Gordon, Char Tabot, Jess Talamantes and Larry Applebaum. (Photo by Ross A.Benson)

The winners of Burbank’s Primary Election L/R David Gordon, Char Tabot, Jess Talamantes and Larry Applebaum. (Photo by Ross A.Benson)

In the school board race, Larry Applebaum, who just nearly missed outright election in the Primary,  easily won re-election to the Board.  The current School Board President fought hard to return to the Board, after helping to champion the recent Measure S Bond Measure which passed during the recent Community College election..

Responding to being the highest voter getter in the election among all the candidate for both School Board and City Council, Applebaum said, “I’m honored and feel privileged that the community has given me a third term.”

Charlene Tabet won election to the Board and will replace John Dilibert, who was appointed to the Board when the City Council appointed for Board Member Debbie Kukta as Treasurer.

Tabet credited her experience with PTA, as having prepared her for her new post.  “Dealing with parents, teachers and students through PTA has given me a head start on what to expect as a school board member.”

Reelected School Board Member Larry Applebaum is join by newly elected Char Tabet, and current School Board member John Dilibert. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Reelected School Board Member Larry Applebaum is join by newly elected Char Tabet, and current School Board member John Dilibert. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Dilibert, who has done a solid job on the Board and was not a candidate in the election, will now continue his career as a Burbank Police Letiuent, came by City Hall to show support and watch the final results.

“I’m very pleased the with results.  Larry Applebaum is an outstanding choice, as is Char Tabet.  The voters looked at all the choices and elected two people who can continue on in the fine tradition of service and looking out for the best interests of the students in our school district.”,said Dilibert.

Current board member Ted Bunch expressed his approval of the selection the voters made, citing the qualification of the both Applebaum and Tabet.  “I’m pleased with the selection the voters have made.”

Bunch’s term on the board expires in 2015, and he does not plan to run again.

Counting the last of the ballots the clock shows 10:00 a bit quicker than the General Election, and finished hours earlier. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Counting the last of the ballots the clock shows 10:00 a bit quicker than the General Election, and finished hours earlier. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Measure S, a 2% tax on refuse and sewer services to provide discounts for senior citizens and disabled residents was rejected by Burbank voters by a margin of 44% to 56%. The initiative required a 2/3rd majority to pass.

Final results, including provisional ballots cast, and others requiring verification by the Los Angeles County Registrar of Voters, will be tabulated and available from the City Clerk later this week.

Councilman Elect David Gordon and Newly elected Councilman Bob Frutos address and thank  supporters following the Burbank Primary Election Tuesday nite. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Councilman Elect David Gordon and Newly elected Councilman Bob Frutos address and thank supporters following the Burbank Primary Election Tuesday night. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The two Council winners will join Bob Frutos, who was elected outright in the Primary, May 1 when they will be sworn in and a new Mayor and Vice-Mayor will be chosen.

myBurbank’s Managing Editor, Stan Lynch, contributed to this story

 

 

 

Preliminary Results for the 2013 City of Burbank General Election: City Council (two receiving most votes)

Name                                       Votes

David Gordon                          5,411               Elected

Jess Talamantes                      5,268               Elected

Dave Golonski                         4,557

David Nos                               4,355

Burbank Unified School District Board of Education (two receiving most votes)

Name                                       Votes

Larry Applebaum                    5,858               Elected

Charlene “Char” Tabet            4,955               Elected

Steve Ferguson                      4,595

David Dobson                         2,809

Measure S : Special Tax to Fund Refuse and Sewer Customer Assistance Programs (66.67% required to pass)

Yes                                          3,795

No                                           4,910               Measure Fails

City Councilman David Gordan is congratulated by Interim City Manager Ken Pulskamp   and Justin Hess at City Hall. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

City Councilman David Gordan is congratulated by Interim City Manager Ken Pulskamp and Justin Hess at City Hall. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

 

City Councilman David Gordon answers the media's question following his reelection to the Burbank City Council for 4 more years. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

City Councilman David Gordon answers the media’s question following his reelection to the Burbank City Council for 4 more years. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Showing her spirit is Lee Paysinger at the home of former Mayor Mary Lou Howard. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Showing her spirit is Lee Paysinger at the home of former Mayor Mary Lou Howard. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Bob Hope Airport Commissioner Frank Quintero joins Councilman Jess Talamantes with a thumbs up looking at the results at The DeBell Clubhouse. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Bob Hope Airport Commissioner Frank Quintero joins Councilman Jess Talamantes with a thumbs up looking at the results at The DeBell Clubhouse. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

 

Election Sign Theft Isn’t Just Stealing

Burbank Review

by Stan Lynch, Managing Editor

The recent court case, in which a campaign worker was fined for taking a couple of signs belonging to a rival candidate, got me to thinking how the justice system treats such matters.

Going by the letter of the law, taking a candidate’s sign from someone’s lawn or business is theft.  But it is much more.  It is a form of voter suppression.  Of course it doesn’t rise to the level of goons standing in front of a polling place intimidating voters — as has happened in the past presidential election.  But it is a serious matter.

Just as it makes sense to require voters to show a driver’s license or some other form of photo ID in order to reduce the fraudulent voting that has marked the past two president elections, it makes sense to change the way we deal with crimes like taking another candidate’s signs.  While U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder seems to turn a blind eye to voter fraud for blatantly political reasons, our City Council should consider taking some positive action regarding this mater.

Perhaps a new section to the Burbank Municipal Code could address the taking of candidates’ signs.  There should be a distinction between teenage pranks and the deliberate acts of adults.  It would be more appropriate than labeling the crime as “theft.”

In the case of Scott Trinidad, a volunteer for School Board candidate Steve Ferguson, who was caught on surveillance video taking two signs for rival candidate Char Tabet, he was charged with theft. Because the value of the items taken (about $8 for the two signs) was under $50, the crime was an infraction. That’s similar to getting a minor traffic ticket.  After his plea in court, he was fined $200. When the penalties required by the State of California were added to it, the price tag was close to $950.  That is a hefty penalty to pay.  Perhaps a more appropriate penalty would have been community service — something like taking down all the old campaign signs after the election on April 9, is over.

Armenian National Committee of Burbank Announces Endorsements

The last ballots for Burbank’s all-mail General Election were mailed on Thursday, March 21, according to the City Clerk’s office.  This means voters should receive their ballots by Saturday, or at the latest Monday.  Watch for this big white envelope, if you live in the city, advises the ANCA-Burbank.

“Everyone is watching our community since our votes put two candidates over the top, getting them elected in the primary.  That doesn’t usually happen in Burbank,” said Gaidzag Shabazian, Armenian national Committee of America—Burbank Electoral/Political Chair.  “Our votes also helped put two City council candidates into the lead positions going into the April 9 all-mail election.”

Burbank adopted the mail-in ballot system a decade ago.  This makes voters’ lives much easier because they don’t have to go to a polling place on Election Day, which is Tuesday, April 9.  All ballots must be RECEIVED in the City Clerk’s office by 7:00 pm that day.  Otherwise they will not be counted.  A postmark with that date is not valid.

The Burbank ANCA’s endorsed candidates are:

City Council: David Gordon and Jess Talamantes

Board of Education: Larry Applebaum and Steve Ferguson

Voting is easy.  Just fill in the bubbles next to the names of the candidates endorsed by the ANCA. (See the accompanying picture of the completed, two sided, ballot).  Then, tear off the top stub of the ballot and insert the ballot in the secrecy sleeve.  Next, put the ballot/secrecy sleeve in the yellow envelope provided.  Sign the envelope.  Drop it in the mail.  This year, for the first time, the envelope is postage-paid, so voters don’t have to put a stamp on it.

See the accompanying picture of the envelope in which the ballot and voter pamphlet were mailed for the February, so you know what to expect.

“Our Burbank voting system is easy because we all vote from the comfort of home,” said Hagop Hergelian, ANCA-B activist.  “Please be very alert and watch for your ballot.  But, voters often mistake the large white ballot envelope for junk mail and throw it out.  Then, they have to get a replacement, wasting time and effort.”

Participation by the Armenian community is very important.  It demonstrates the concern everyone shares for improving Burbank and gets people elected to office who are most sensitive to the Armenian community’s needs.

If you have any questions, please call the Burbank ANCA at 818/562-1918 or e-mail at: Info@ancaburbank.org