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Candidate not all he's cracked up to be

January 07, 2006

CONFIRMING FACTSDavid Laurell's ode to Bill Wiggins for the vacant City Council seat ("New man, new year," Community Commentary, Dec. 21) would be positively laughable if the issues facing Burbank were not so serious.

Something I have never understood is how politicians, even ex-politicians such as Laurell, are so comfortable in mangling the truth.

Let me point out some of the falsehoods in Laurell's letter:

"Wiggins was a major force in the Chandler Bikeway."

That's not my recollection.

Politicians always seek to take credit for anything good that takes place during their term in office no matter how phony their claim is. So to say Wiggins was a major force, when it was local residents who made a difference in establishing the bikeway is wrong.

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Laurell makes the claim that Wiggins "was able to put a halt to years of animosity by establishing an excellent rapport with airport commissioners from Pasadena and Glendale." This is actually true. By rolling over and playing dead to the demands of Pasadena and Glendale there is now "Peace in our time" regarding the airport. Just what we don't need on the council is another Neville Chamberlain.

Laurell insinuates that Wiggins is actually accomplishing something by being "diligently committed to seeing the now voluntary nighttime curfew at the airport become one that is mandatory." The fact is that this conversion from a voluntary curfew to one that is mandatory is no closer to reality than it was in 1978 when the airport authority was first formed. Wiggins, the other airport commissioners and the Burbank council have had, and still have, the power of land use, which gives them the upper hand in negotiating for a mandatory curfew. But in their typical cowardly fashion, they have elected not to use their negotiating power to help us gain a mandatory curfew.

Laurell covers up many facts that have occurred in Wiggins term in office both as a member of the council and the airport authority. The most important of these facts is that the airport has been allowed to gain enough land to build a huge 27-gate terminal that has the potential of quadrupling the present passenger volume at the airport.

For those who have lived in Burbank during Wiggin's involvement in local politics, I ask them to stop and think if they like the degree of development and the resultant increases in traffic and congestion.

If Burbank voters want more development and more congestion, the choice is clear, Bill Wiggins should receive your vote for the vacant Council seat.

For those voters who want to see the pace of development and increased traffic volume slowed there is a clear alternative and that is David Gordon.

Really and truly there is a night-and-day difference between Wiggins and Gordon.

I'll go for the light of day with Gordon rather than continue with the darkness and the Los Angelesization of Burbank with Wiggins.

RON VANDERFORD

Burbank

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