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Mickie Winkler e-mail: Update on Unions and the Campaign

Original post made by Richard Hine, editor of The Almanac, on Oct 31, 2006

<b>Below is an Oct. 19 e-mail from Councilwoman Mickie Winkler to Menlo Park residents. Ms. Winkler is a candidate in the Nov. 7 Menlo Park City Council election.</b>

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Posted by Mary Ellen Patrick
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Oct 31, 2006 at 2:25 pm

Ms. Winkler,

In regards to the union mailer entitled “Off The Deep End” critizing you and Ms. Duboc, here is word-for-word what it specifically says:

A Sweetheart Deal:
Menlo Park City Councilmembers Lee Duboc and Mickie Winkler fast-tracked a vote to privatize the operation of Burgess Pool while leaving taxpayers holding a $6.8 million bill to pay off the facility. They gave the pool rent-free to a private contractor to profit from this facility with no competitive bidding process, no review by the citizen Parks and Recreation Commission, and before even knowing his fees or the public’s hours of access to the pool.
(The Almanac, Cover Story, “How public is the process?”, March 15, 2006).

The Kids Suffered
Eight children got sick and one was hospitalized in June from chemical exposure at the pool, leading The Almanac to report “a recent chemical scare has brought into question the responsibilities of the private operator versus those of city staff.”
(The Almanac, Cover Story, “Who dies what at Burgess Pool?”, June 28, 2006).

Who Will Be Hurt Next?
Now Duboc and Winkler are vowing to ignore parents’ objections and the recommendations of a citizen task force they appointed and to move forward with privatizing the city’s child care programs.
(E-mail from Mickie Winkler, 9/2/06)

Now maybe I’m a little biased here, but while hard-hitting with striking pictures and graphics, it sure doesn’t seem like anything that is factually wrong or deceiving. In fact, if I was in charge, I would have added a part about how you and Ms. Duboc still voted to continue the childcare privatization process even AFTER it was revealed (by the union) that the one private company left bidding had been cited 8 times in the past 2 years alone by social services (as I read in The Almanac), while the city-run program had a completely clean record.

Oh, and by the way, who endorsed you back in 2002? The SEIU, I believe, an endorsement which you gladly took. I guess you thought that was supposed to be a lifetime endorsement?

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Posted by Take Back Menlo Park
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Nov 1, 2006 at 3:39 pm

Ms. Winkler,

You want to talk about the SEIU union supporting your opposition. Funny, but as the previous person posting a comment points out, you didn’t blink in gladly taking their endorsement back in 2002!

Now, how about addressing your troubling connection to real estate interests. We did the math, Ms. Winkler, using figures cited by The Almanac – at least $43,250 of the $78,500 your slate has raised in direct donations is coming from real-estate interests – THAT’S OVER ONE-HALF THE TOTAL AMOUNT YOU’VE RAISED THUS FAR!

And a healthy chunk of that $43,250 - $18,000 to be exact – is coming from two developers with development proposals before the city (Sand Hill Property Management and the Park Theater owner). How do you explain that, Ms. Winkler, especially after you swore off developer money back in 2002?

I eagerly await your response.

David Buckley
Take Back Menlo Park