Burien Voter’s Guide: City Council Position 1

Burien’s primary election deadline is August 1st. Four City Council seats are up for a vote. These are the people who will determine the direction we take as a city for the next four years. We will cover each Council position in this series.

Read about Position 3 candidates herePosition 5 here, and Position 7 here.

The five contenders for Burien City Council Position 1 are:

Gary Wood

  • Advocates having a long term plan for Burien that promotes quality of life.
  • Would have the city collaborate with businesses and charities to help the homeless, including hiring homeless people as day laborers at the parks.
  • He wants to investigate having a local police force [the Council has done this in the past and deemed it to be too expensive, at that time].
  • Would like to see us work with the Port for our mutual benefit, rather than resorting to a lawsuit.
  • Would like to see green spaces become an integral part of commercial development.
  • He would not change Burien’s current ‘Sanctuary City’ status, but would not have supported it in the first place because he believes it caused polarization within the community, while changing very little of the law.

We have spoken with Wood in person, and you can read his answers to our questions here. garywoodforburien@gmail.com garywoodforburien.com

Pedro Olguin

  • Endorsed by 34th Dist. Dems., King County Labor Council, and Dave Upthegrove.
  • He would support working class families, public safety, and a healthy local economy.
  • He says he would like to see Burien do more Town Halls to get better community input.
  • Supports Burien’s ‘Sanctuary City’ status, as he belives it’s important that people feel safe, and that we as a city should not have to enforce unfunded federal mandates.

We have spoken with Olguin at multiple community events, and you can read his answers to our email questions here.  burien4olguin@gmail.com burien4olguin.nationbuilder.com

Robert Richmond III

  • Has a plan for what he believes are Burien’s two big issues: Energy independence & homelessness. He would solve both problems with a waste-to-energy plant that employs the homeless population in a work-for-shelter program. The waste would come from our local industries.
  • Richmond considers himself our environmental candidate, and regularly volunteers with the Environmental Science Center.
  • He says he is in favor of Burien’s ‘Sanctuary City’ status.

For more on this candidate, see his answers to our questions. richmondrobert@hotmail.com

Charles Schaefer

  • Volunteers with Transform Burien, regularly attends city council meetings, and has lived in Burien all his life.
  • He plans to increase the police force, and believes the answer to the homeless issue lies in the private sector.
  • He is in favor of Burien’s ‘Sanctuary City’ status because it makes people feel safer interacting with the police, even though he belives it provides little change from previous policies.

We have spoken with Charles at a community event, and you can read his answers to our questions. charlesschaefer89@gmail.com

Joel Manning

  • Champions economic growth through business development.
  • Supports proven crime reductions strategies, and would increase police funding.
  • Believes all services to aid the homeless should be provided by the private sector, and would cut Burien’s human services budget.
  • He opposes Burien’s ‘Sanctuary City’ status, as he belives it is political theater and is a risk for federal grants.

We have spoken with Manning at a community event, but he has not yet answered our email questions. friendsofjoelmanning@gmail.com

Sources: Face to face interviews, King County Voter’s Guide, B-Town Blog, and email.

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