Saturday, July 15, 2017

Allen Mathews, 2017 Bremerton, WA City Council candidate and USN Veteran talks Government Financial Accountability and Transparency

Allen Mathews 2017 City Council candidate for Bremerton, WA
Allen Mathews "The Voice of Reason" - 2017 City Council candidate for Bremerton, WA
Allen Mathews is running in 2017 for the city of Bremerton, WA City Council position 1.  You can follow Mathews on Facebook at facebook.com/mathews4bremertoncitycouncil and visit his website at mathewsforcitycoun.wixsite.com/mathews4bremerton.
 
DM:  City Council candidate for Bremerton, WA is our guest today for an in-depth look at his campaign and plans. Thank you for joining us, Allen Mathews. Let's start off with a quick recap on what has lead you to this 2017 run and how things have been so far?

AM:  First and foremost, thank you and the LCI for conducting the interview.  What has led me to run in the first place?  Well I would have to say it was finding out about hidden utility taxes.  Former Bremerton city councilman Roy Ruby on and Mr. Robert Parker explained this all to me.  In December the budget for 2017 showed 5.5 million dollars being siphoned off the utilities and into the general fund.  This action submitted the idea to run, I watched the incumbent motion or second then vote yes on every bill that dealt with the text of utilities.  

As far as how things have been campaigning, I guess great considering this is my first time running for public office.  Voters are generally willing to talk and appreciate when you have a dialogue with them.  Because of that dialogue I formed a non partisan platform that no one has complained about.


DM:  Very important reasons to run this year and congratulations on taking the plunge to represent the people of Bremerton, WA. With that said, what other issues do you consider top priority for the city? What issues are you tackling that other candidates are not addressing?

AM:  The other issues that I know haven't been brought up by either opponent is honest governance.  I don't like hidden agendas when I comes to the services that the public pays for.  That even goes into unreasonable justifications for spending.

I want to help develop means of repairing the decaying infrastructure that doesn't revolve around the current crisis management of waiting until there is Grant money.
There is a dire need of a hospital in Bremerton with the CHI Franciscans but our of Harrison Hospital.  I want to work with the council, the mayor and the elected officials of the 23rd and 26th LD to get a second provider in the county to compete with CHI.
Because of the rising homeless and low income population there has been concern about Bremerton housing authority and Kitsap housing authority practices of not ensuring vouchers not staying in their immediate area.  We need to ensure that our local funds stay local.


DM:  Transparency is always a refreshing welcome in politics. Holding true to that; what are your plans on working with your peers on the council and the mayor? There is a lot of work to be completed in Bremerton.

AM:  David I am a USN Veteran, I took an oath twice in my career with the Navy.  City council is no different; there is an oath to uphold and defend the BMC (Bremerton Municipal Code), the RCW's, WAC, USC and the Constitution of the State and USA.  I plan to work with my peers while best representing my voters within the scope of those laws, I plan to hold them accountable to their oaths as they should with me.  This is part of the reason I call myself the Voice of Reason,  If the voters or the fellow members don't particularly like a law, I am willing to help guide them in the right direction to get in contact with those who can change the law, such as State Legislators or Representative Derek Kilmer, Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell.  And with transparency I am ready to talk to voters on any vote I cast; I actually encourage the criticism that comes with the position.


DM:  If you could tell existing council one thing right now for them to hear about your ideas, what would your message be?

AM:  I have already started building a report with sitting council members who are not at risk of losing their seats, or not up for election.  They know where I stand already on most things.  The most important item is if they can not bring an ordinance change to the utilities on their own, be prepared for a voter initiative that I fully support coming down the road to change the utilities taxes and funding that they cannot control.


DM:  How can citizens contribute towards your campaign? Are you accepting donations or volunteers for your campaign? If so how would they be able to contact you? What social media sites and or websites can you provide for us here?

AM:  Citizens can contribute towards the campaign by cash or PayPal.  I accept any volunteers I can get.  Tiffany Diaz De Leon, Mark Kibler and Alex Williams have all volunteered time to help doorbell and banner wave.  To sign up to volunteer follow the link to the campaign website; https://mathewsforcitycoun.wixsite.com/mathews4bremerton.  Also there is a Facebook page that you can follow at https://www.facebook.com/mathews4bremertoncitycouncil.  There you can find my events message to volunteer, and donate.  Finally if you go to PayPal and select to send money, use the email address mathewsforcitycouncil@gmail.com.


DM:  Mr. Mathews, this has been a pleasure and glad we were able to cover so much detail about your campaign and issues you will be addressing as Bremerton City Council member. Are there any other thoughts or points you would like to leave with those who are watching? You have the floor.

AM:  David thank you for the time to speak.  I am grateful for the support the Kitsap LP had afford me by endorsement, donations and volunteers.  As we get closer to primary date I'll be picking it into high gear to ensure that I am the Voice of District 1 and the Voice of Reason at the Dias.  Thank you again and continue the great work with LCI.


This contribution is from Seattle-based independent journalist, David Malekar, Editor in Chief for the Liberty Chronicle Independent; and publishes content to other online publications.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Phoenix Arizona DCS(CPS) Families Rally 6/16/2017

 DCS (CPS) Families Rally
Phoenix, AZ




On June 16th, 2017 A group of families who have had their children seized by the Department of Child Safety (DCS/CPS) and other activists took to the streets of Phoenix, AZ. Many of them just want their story heard and for their children to be returned safely. 


This is a huge issue here in Arizona. The state of Arizona doesn't have to have warrants to seize children unlike other states. DCS is loosely regulated and there are stories of abuse of power in various forms during investigations. This has had media coverage for the last year but legislatively nothing has been accomplished. Between 2011 and 2015 there was a sharp increase of children being taken away. 4,500 more children were taken away in 2015 than in 2011. If you look at the numbers you can tell there is a problem. However this is more than just about numbers. This is about rights of parents as well as children. Without seeking warrants (for non life endangered cases) to remove children from their parents homes and severing parental rights this goes against the 4th amendment. There's been cases of abuse in group and foster homes. Some of the abuse has been severe and those numbers continue to rise. While the department has been in trouble before for letting family abuse cases go in the past, they have turned the other direction where they are taking children away for simple issues in the family care. There are many sides to this issue but are these numbers and stories alarming to you? 



Kids in Foster Care (Not updated to current)


Arizona kids removed from Families


Above Part one of the Rally

Above is the start of the Rally going into the detention of a family member Beth Young Breen and AZ Gubernatorial candidate/activist Merissa Hamilton. They were held for most of the day at Maricopa County Jail in Downtown Phoenix after blocking the street during an order to disperse out of the street. Bond was paid and both of them were released by June 17th. 





Above pictures of the jail where they were held


Above Part 2 of the Rally


Above Part 3 of the Rally


Parents speak out 

There was a point where we had to wait for light rail and a signal. This is where parents decided to speak a little on their thoughts on DCS and children being taken from their parents.



Above a vigil and speech in front of City Hall


Sami Stone and the families hold a meeting @ City Hall


This was a meeting that Sami Stone (Chief of staff for Councilmember Sal Diciccio) was hearing the families of the children taken by DCS. This was mostly telling their stories of the seizures and cases. 


For more information and media coverage you can check out the links below. 


AZ Central media coverage


AZ Central Story on Current policy

Graphs and data on DCS

More media coverage on the High rates of Seizure

Interesting

Alex Love is an independent journalist from Lynnwood, WA / Phoenix, AZ. He is a community servant and activist who also runs a non profit called Love 4 Liberty.