Mayor Scott Dudley

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The city of Oak Harbor has placed all of it’s financial information online for residents to view though the online portal https://opengov.com. This is a major step in increasing tranparency and open governmant in the city.

The information available is outstanding with almost every facet of the cities finances available for viewing.  You can view information by department, vendor, document, date, year and even view the check register to see every check written by our city. You can filter out, or in information in a very useable format to see just where the cities money is going.

Hats off the Mayor Dudley for taking this huge step in open government.

Here are several examples of the information available through the Open Gov platform:

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The Garry Oak Tree at the Oak Harbor Post Office was cut down this Sunday morning.

The City gave very little notice that it was to be cut down but the condition of the tree is what is caused the expedited action on the cities part.

Last May a 100 pound branch broke off in a windstorm and last June another 300 pound branch fell on the sidewalk. This spring and summer when the tree is in full leaf and the sap is running would have more than likely caused more limbs to fail.

It is certainly sad to see a tree of this age cut down but the years were not been to kind to it. This tree was more than likely planted alongside a wagon trail some 400 years ago and the since then that wagon trail has turned into the city we know as Oak Harbor. Once you pave over a trees roots the tree suffers and eventually the tree needs to be removed. (Pictures below the fold)

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At the City Council meeting on August 7th 2013 the Oak Harbor City Council passed resolution 13-20 which states:

CITY OF OAK HARBOR RESOLUTION NO. 13-20

A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY OF OAK HARBOR, WASHINGTON, SUPPORTING
NAVAL AIR STATION WHIDBEY ISLAND AND ITS TRAINING ACTIVITIES
AND FACILITIES.

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At the City Council meeting on May 21st the City Council had 2 agenda items that were tabled until the next meeting following the November election. Both of these Agenda items were brought by the Mayor and Administration in response to the “Fiscal Emergency” declared by the City Council.

One of the items was Resolution 13-12 which would have eliminated health care benefits for part time elected officials including the Mayor and the City Council.

The other was an Agenda Bill that asked the Council to make a decision on the method of reviewing and possibly reducing the salaries of Oak Harbor elected officials. Read the rest of this entry »

After the city council refused to change the makeup of the Marina Advisory board at the insistence of the Chair of the Marina Advisory Board Christon Skinner the Mayor removed Christon Skinner from the board.

The Mayor wanted to expand the board by 2 members and allow 2 non marina user onto the board and to include a live aboard from the marina on the committee. This was fought by the chair who wanted to keep the status quo on the board.

This is a good move for Oak Harbor, the marina belongs to all of the citizens of Oak Harbor not just the users of the marina. By having a couple of members on the board that are not marina users is an attempt to get the marina more integrated with the citizens and working with the city and it’s residents and to encourage activities that help Oak Harbor and not just the Marina and it’s users.

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In her New Year 2012 newsletter, Commissioner Emerson gave citizens a warning about a very important land use decision soon to be made. 

http://archive.constantcontact.com/fs047/1103899759638/archive/1106248418800.html

She explained how this would have given us a way out of the cost associated with the WEAN lawsuit and any others pertaining to AG Critical Areas.

For Island County, “opting in” to the new Ruckelhaus Voluntary Stewardship Program (VSP), would mean the lawsuit goes away.

Any future lawsuits would be defended by the State because they give final blessing.

Commissioner Emerson  told the truth on the obligation to the county when she  said’  

“This would not be an unfunded mandate. We would not be required to begin implementing the plan until we receive funding of $150,000 for the first year, $100,000 for years 2 and 3 and there is no penalty for an early opt out.”

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I thought I would re-post the first article ever posted to jokeharbor.org/islandpolitics.org. It was posted on 10-1-2010 and here is what it said:
(See the original post with images below, don’t miss the images!)

“Oak Harbor has recently decided that Pioneer Way, the historic downtown of our city, is to be turned into a one way street. This is being done against the will of the residents and businesses in the downtown area. There have been many accusations of conflicts of interest and of illegal votes by City Council members.”

The re-posting of this is rather fitting because the the issue that this article was about was just the start of a long drawn out saga that is not over yet some 3 years later. 

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Again we see our obstructive Oak Harbor City Council in action.

Recently Mayor Dudley appointed a new city attorney as a full time city employee to replace the interim attorney. The City Council has refused to confirm this appointment. This is 3 or 4 to zero in confirming the Mayors appointments without obstruction. (Correction: The City Council approved ONE appointee without obstruction, Larry Cort.)

Let’s go back a bit in recent time to when the City Council approved a new rule that allows the City Council to confirm the Mayors appointments. Since inception Oak Harbor has allowed it’s Mayor the sole ability to hire and fire administrative personel under his control until this new rule by the council. This new rule was adopted with some controversy as this allows the council to control who works under the Mayor’s control and for the citizens of Oak Harbor. Remember the City Attorney and management personnel works for the Mayor and the citizens in this city not the council. The Mayor is elected as our executive officer and all city management personnel work directly under his control. The council has thrown a wrench into this process by voting in themselves the ability to confirm those appointees. Now the Mayor is faced with hiring an employee under his direct control but having to go through our obstructive City Council to actually hire that employee. There has not been one appointee for a position chosen by our Mayor that has not been rejected or obstructed by this council with the exception of Larry Cort.

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The County Commissioners are planning to create a citizens committee to address citizen complaints against property owners who wish to shoot guns on their property, and  County Planning Director,  Bob Peterson will head it up…unbelievable!

This is another  effort  by  government taking second amendment rights from us.

We need “all hands on deck” to attend this meeting at the County Commissioner’s hearing room   2:00 p.m. Monday, February 25th

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Apparently there has again been a change in the venue for the upcoming Oak Harbor City Council meeting scheduled for 6:00 PM the 5th of February. It will now be held at it’s normal place at the Oak Harbor City Hall unless the City Council changes their mind again…

As is typical of our City Council apparently they have rejected the plan to move the February 5th meeting to the Firehall to give more room for people to attend.

No one really knows why this was changed but with the history of the Oak Harbor City Council attempting to restrict public comments at Council meetings one can only assume that this is the reason. We have members of our City Council that do not want to hear from the citizens of their community and with the large crowd expected at this meeting it is rather sad that they do not wish to accomodate the crowd that is sure to attend.

Last week Island Politics posted an edited video of the city council meeting on 1-15-2012 to youtube.com in which our Mayor Scott Dudley stood up for a local disabled veteran Lucas Yonkman and his right to carry a concealed firearm.

This video went viral during the past week and the response to this video has been overwhelming. The video has been copied and distributed far and wide. Most major news outlets have used our video in their reports and have interviewed Scott Dudley and Lucas Yonkman repeatedly. Below I have compiled a list of the media outlets that have so far reported on this and links to the various copies of this video on youtube.com.

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This was sent to us by Councilman Jim Campbell.

From the City of Oak Harbor:

In anticipation of larger crowd than usual, the February 5th Council Meeting will be held in the vehicle bay of the Oak Harbor Fire Department, 855 East Whidbey Avenue.  

We will start to advertise this change via Channel 10 and our website today. It will also be announced via the Agenda Summary sent to Whidbey News Times.

This is a story that has been uncovered by citizens of Oak Harbor. A story of political favoritism that should shed some daylight on what many in Oak Harbor sometimes refer to as the “good ol’ boy” network.

The length and depth to which the good ol’ boy network in Oak Harbor will go in their political endeavors are certainly troubling. We have seen other examples of these endeavors in the recent past, such as when Mayor Jim Slowik walked into a store in downtown Oak Harbor and stole a political sign out of the window of a local merchant. Then, when the merchant complained about the theft the merchant was threatened with prosecution by Oak Harbor Chief of Police Rick Wallace. You can read about that black eye to Oak Harbor in a previous post here on Island Politics.

The specific issue being brought to light now arose during a heated political campaign in which incumbent Mayor Jim Slowik was running for re-election against Scott Dudley

The documentation shows City of Oak Harbor Police Detective Tony Slowik accessed an official use only law enforcement database LInX, using not his own, but another detectives password 22 times for 65 searches. Thirty-one of which pertained to Dudley or his family, and one of Detective Slowik’s own family too.

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At last Tuesdays City Council meeting a citizen commented during the citizens comment period encouraging the City Council to support the Second Amendment and to help educate our children about firearms and firearm safety.

In a rather disturbing display by Councilman Almberg this citizen was called back to the podium by Councilman Almberg and the councilman asked the Mayor to enquire if he was carrying a concealed weapon. After some discussion with the city Attorney about the legality of Councilman Almberg requesting a citizen return to the podium to be asked a question by the Councilman the citizen volunteered to answer any questions Councilman Almberg saw fit to ask him. After the citizens confirmed that he was lawfully and legally carrying a concealed weapon Councilman Almberg made a motion (during the citizens comment period yet) that he wanted to make a requirement that citizens coming to city council meeting check their firearms with either the police department or the Chief of Police before being allowed to attend the meeting. The Motion was seconded by Joel Servatius. After a long discussion the motion was presented for a vote with Councilman Almberg and Councilman Servatius voting yes and the remainder of the Council voted no. Immediately after the motion failed councilman Almberg excused himself and left the meeting.

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“Cooper’s Troopers” in front of Oak Harbor City Hall on Saturday evening in Oak Harbor

Starting at 8 PM on Saturday evening, people calling themselves “Cooper’s Troopers” began a vigil / protest in front of the Oak Harbor City Hall.  Their stated main intent: to express dissatisfaction with Island County prosecutor Gregg Banks’ decision to release Jason Ellis from jail last Monday. Ellis and Chris Cooper had been in a physical altercation in Oak Harbor on November 17th. City of Oak Harbor police arrested Ellis on Saturday, November 24th in conjunction with that altercation. On Thursday, November 27th, three days after Banks ordered Ellis released from jail, Chris Cooper died of head injuries. Read the rest of this entry »

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