What's in a name?

What's in a name?

Saturday, March 24, 2012

What's in a name? Did our councilmember forget who she is?

Not only while on Council business,  but now in the Ward as well.  Councilmember Bowser has refused to turn over her cell phone records pertaining to the recent article about council excessive cell phone bills.
It was appropriately noted that Ward 4 Councilmember Bowser has racked up the highest usage of any councilmember.  Her extensive call log now proves that she isn't just doing council business but also making personal calls on her District of Columbia Government issued cell phone.

While Ward 4 Councilmember Muriel Bowser was too busy to show up at a senior candidate's forum,  and too busy to care about Ward 4 constituents, she clearly had time to dial up her Campaign offices and inquire about how she was looking in the eyes of voters.

What is it about an elected official that proclaims to have good judgement, and to be engaged on the issue of credibility and transparency that they just don't get it.  Residents of the District of Columbia should not be forced to foot the bill for her use of a government issued cell phone for personal gain.  Personal gain of seeking re-election.

Muriel Bowser made a tragic mistake and took a call from her campaign office and then subsequently picked up her government issued cell phone and called her campaign offices. Wonder what that conversation was about?

Perhaps it was about her decision not to attend a Committee hearing held on the Committee of the Judiciary in their oversight capacity when Fire and EMS Chief Dennis Rubin was brought before the committee to discuss the Fire Department's performance.    This committee rubber stamped Rubin's confirmation hearing just over a year ago for the public now to learn that there was 6 counts of personnel related complaints in his personnel fine from 6 different women at the Sarasota Florida Fire Department.

Maybe Councilmember Bowser could have used her government issued cell phone to call Sarasota Florida and inquire about then Chief Ellerbe's history there during his short tenure as their Chief.

She clearly didn't.  She clearly failed this city,  and the residents of this ward when she did nothing to assure us that we were getting the best possible Chief of our fire department.

She failed every senior citizen in this Ward when she failed to show up for the Senior's candidate forum earlier this month and stand face to face with many and answer their questions.  Instead she sent a young and inexperienced staffer Brandon Todd,  although on leave he as served the councilmember in the past as nothing more than a constituent relations liaison.  Don't get me wrong Brandon is probably one of the best on her staff.  At least offering a polite mannerism and an approachable personality.

Fact is,  there may have been a violation of the Federal Hatch Act by him standing in front of citizens talking about the Councilmembers accomplishments while in office.  For the most part, Brandon Todd failed to answer the final two questions asked about the Councilmembers failure to show up at the committee hearing, and again for the Senior Forum.

We know she likes to talk on the phone and that she doesn't care enough to show up in public unless perhaps there is a ribbon to be cut,  and a celebration to appear to offer up her accomplishments for all those attending to see.

Let's move beyond this style of "not caring" and beyond this style of "not showing up" and let's elect someone that cares.  Someone that will offer us a truly transparent approach to our District government.  Let's elect someone that will not sell out to pay for play developers,  and corporations seeking favors so that they can get rich off of their relationships and favoritism from our elected in Ward 4.  

Monday, March 5, 2012

Bowser Campaign in Receipt of more than $18,000.00 from local Health Care firm .

The news that the FBI are investigating contributions from Jeffrey Thompson and those associated with his organization came as not surprise to many of us in the District of Columbia.  Earlier this month,  the news came just weeks from the April 3, primary. The FBI had raided the offices and residences of: Jeffrey Thompson of Thompson, Cobb, Bazilio, & Associates, Inc. Things like this always seem to have a relationship with those elected in our city. It is almost a given that there will be connections to this company's alleged misconduct and some of our elected officials.

Muriel Bowser, Councilmember Ward 4 has received numerous contributions from Jeffry Thompson and his associates.  Many through money orders,  and most evading the campaign laws that limit contributions to $500.00.  The recently submitted records indicate more than $385,000.00 in corporate contributions.
With such a large percentage of her total campaign funds coming from contributions from corporations how can you or I expect our voices to be heard?  Clearly we won't be.

Muriel Bowser who chairs the very committee that could have introduced real campaign finance reform, tabled the matter until after the primary.  Why one might ask?  Because a method for real reform would likely paint her and her campaign as indulgent to the over load of taking too much from those wishing to be given priority.  Priority in decisions that can clearly given them an advantage in development, District contracts and much more.

In a means to bring as much of corporate contributions to light here in Ward 4 I have spent a considerable amount of time to research the connections between the Executive Staff of Thompson, Cobb, Bazilio & Associates and our very own Ward 4 Councilmember, Muriel Bowser.

Thompson, Cobb, Bazilio and Associates, PC (TCBA or the Firm) is a full service professional services firm that provides accounting, audit and assurance, information systems.

Here is where there contributions to Ward 4 have gone since the 2007 special election held to replace then Mayor-Elect Fenty.

Contributions to Muriel Bowser during her first run for Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 4, her re-election campaign in 2008 and now re-election in 2012.

This group has contributed more than$18,000.00 to Muriel Bowser and her campaigns since 2007.
Often giving several donations on the same day from various entities from within the company.
Often using up to three different corporation names or Limited Liability Corporations.

Most often giving the legal limit and clearly giving from every perspective they can and under every name. Look carefully at the dates as there are numerous contributions given on the same day from various entities from within the corporation.

What kind of influence has Thompson, Cobb, Bazilio & Associates been trying to buy?  Why are they so interested in the the election of Muriel Bowser ?  All things that you should want answers to.  All things you should wonder about.

Given the fact that any individual is only allowed to contribute a maximum of $500 to a political campaign. If you are married you then can give $500 and your spouse can give another $500.  But in no situation other than a corporation or an L.L.C. can you garner any more legally.  Here are examples of numerous members of the same firm donating on often the same day,  and with different divisions of the corporation giving the allowable limit.

Ever wonder why Muriel Bowser is on record of not wanting to curtail corporation donations to political campaigns?  Ever wonder why Muriel Bowser has refused to return these donations and make good on her "transparency" to the voters of this ward?

The voters in this city, and more intimately here in Ward 4 must step back and take a serious look at how we can best form our city's trust in our elected officials.  Electing those that have such contiguous histories of listening first to the large corporate contributors rather than you and I should end.  

The history our of political system depends on you and I stepping up and saying enough is enough.  The future must depend on honesty, integrity, and transparency.  Ward 4 clearly doesn't have this now,  and we won't see it if we are used as a platform for Muriel Bowser to be re-elected, with her publicly stated intentions of running for a higher office in the future.  She clearly has her sights set on a run for Mayor in 2014, or possibly Chair of the Council.

We must create the positive change that our city deserves so that our efforts are looked upon by our children as one of compassion and insightful determination to do better.

Listen, read and make yourself aware of the many problems with current leadership in Ward 4 and across this city and vote accordingly.