Recently Lakewood City Mayor Don Anderson posted in this publication some pictures of a property that needed attention.
What his intention was in singling out the property owner, other than of course the obvious attempt to make a game of it – his words – and perhaps other reasons, is left to the conjecture of the readers and of those who commented it probably didn’t serve the Mayor’s purpose, whatever that purpose was.
Assuming we’re all human and thus occasionally are guilty of doing things in ways that are disapproved by others, if legitimate reason can be given by which to mend our ways and corrective actions most simply and expeditiously are then made, is that not progress, if not laudable?
“There is,” after all said C.S. Lewis, “nothing progressive about being pig headed and refusing to admit a mistake.”
But what shall we say of those who, having had opportunity to most simply and expeditiously deal with a matter, instead embark obstinately on a course that ignores both the remedy immediately at hand even while at the same time assuming the same or similar malady afflicts everyone in similar circumstances?
Prior to installing the Rental Inspection Program, Lakewood had in hand the tools by which to deal with properties not to their liking. Five different programs to be exact. And a landlord-tenant act that covers all and anything else.
This that the Mayor has chosen to make poster-child worthy was cleaned up in the 15 days (deadline November 30) allotted by which to weed-eat, remove fencing and haul away an abandoned car.
All done. The program works. But only one-half the story is told in these pictures shown here.
Did the Mayor know from his Code Enforcement Department that all that had been addressed had been accomplished? Within the time-frame? Did he check? Did he care?
When KIRO Investigative Reporter Jesse Jones directed viewers – a tenant in particular – of his leaky-roof property report back when aired live March 16, 2016 where to get help to correct deficiencies, Lakewood – when city staff ran the story the night of July 5, 2016 – did not share the segment that was in fact part of the Jones’ exposé.
The transcript accompanying Jones’ presentation told simply and expeditiously, not to mention legally, where everyone – 33,000 having since viewed Jones’ complete, unedited version – could get help to have the necessary corrective actions taken.
But Lakewood then, as the Mayor now, showed that night only the problem, not the solution.
If it is in fact the problem we desire to address, and not in fact the program that ends up being the end-all, then why are we not doing – or at least attempting to do – what works?
If in fact what works – most simply and expeditiously – is the goal.
David Anderson says
Mayor Don Anderson’s article singling out a citizen and property owner was submitted by the Mayor to The Suburban Times on November 30. The Mayor’s article was published December 1. But on November 29, Code Enforcement posted the following on the “MyLakewood311” app:
“A courtesy notice was sent to the property owner on 11/8/17 giving a compliance due date of 11/30/17. I (bmathies, Code Enforcement officer), was in the area on 11/29 and noticed the property is in complete compliance and case is closed.”
If the source of the Mayor’s information was in fact “MyLakewood311” – “your official civic engagement tool to stay in touch with the City of Lakewood” – then he would, had he checked, noticed that the day before he submitted his article the case had already been closed.
It is further worth noting that, even though other “completed” projects remain on the 311 app, the one concerning the property which was the subject of the Mayor’s article – the property that was fund “in complete compliance” – has evidently been removed.
The Mayor is pretty close to slander regarding that property owner. I hope Heidi (the city atty) has an insurance policy set up on the Mayor. It doesn’t surprise me that the code enforcement project mysteriously disappeared from the app.
One would think that the Mayor would have tried to explain his position on the RIP or somehow provided a response. I find it very pathetic that he threw out a bomb and then didn’t follow up on the comments/concerns. At the very least stand up for what you believe in and don’t bury your head in the sand and hope it all goes away. This is weak sauce for a city leader.
Sorry if this posts 2x I was working off my phone.
David Wilson says
Blah Blah Blah waste of time. Get over it slumlord.