Ralph Moore, thank you for your letter to the editor in the Oct. 2 edition. Guilty as charged, you are correct, I did submit three requests to the Washington State Auditor’s Office on Nov. 9, 2011, after the campaign to receive outside guidance and their opinion, and after seeing that none of the issues I raised would be addressed by the city council, which you were part of at the time along with Jerry Phillips. These requests were included with the auditor’s regular visit a year later.

During that year Jerry was removed as chair of the Lodging Tax committee, Jerry no longer sat on the Long Beach Peninsula Visitors Bureau board, the Lodging Tax meetings were publicized, the city council was briefed by staff about remote interests and recusals became the norm on the city council. The auditor’s note in the debriefing was that the city was not following its LTAC process and that was pretty much it.

The point is that instead of discussing and debating these issues in the council chambers, Jerry went straight to intimidation and the threat of a lawsuit. Citizens should feel free to question their city officials, and if their concerns are not addressed there are agencies they can turn to. On my constituent website at www.markperezcitycouncilor.com I have links to the State Auditor’s Office, State Attorney General Open Government, and State Secretary of State websites, and How to submit Public Records Requests. All these are resources available to citizens if their public officials ignore citizens’ concerns or have lost citizens’ trust. Visibility, transparency, open government and public trust, these are all qualities we should demand of our elected officials. On my constituent website, I also have my letter to the editor along with links to the lawsuit, the letter sent to the governor of Arizona in support of their immigration policy (which you, Ralph Moore, initiated), links to the Chinook Observer Court Reports for both DUI arraignments/pre-trials/hearings/ amendments, and an audio extract of Jerry’s comment on the drowning victim’s recovery.

So thank you again for your letter, but my vote is still for Tom Werner. I’ve watched Jerry Phillips for years at city council meetings and workshops as a citizen, and as a city hall volunteer, and I’ve seen no magnificence in Jerry. Instead, I’ve seen him use his position and power to intimidate those who may disagree with him or are in his disfavor.

Legalese: This is my personal opinion and not that of the council.

Mark Perez

Long Beach

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