Why I'm motivated to speak out for Gladstone community
I am often asked, "What do you stand for?" My answer is fairly simple. I stand for the average person who is trying to stay afloat in these challenging financial waters. I stand for government serving people and not the other way around. I stand for an informed public having input to how their tax dollars are being spent. I believe that government should be held as accountable as they hold us to be, or even to a higher standard. In a nutshell I stand for the introduction of common sense into government.
My family has been in Clackamas County for over 100 years and in Oregon almost 200. My great-great-grandfather was dubbed the man whose vote saved Oregon for the United States. After breaking the tie vote at Champoeg Park he convinced his associate to solidify the vote and Oregon was born. The first William (Bill) Osburn in the area was buried in 1903 in Oregon City. We have always been involved in standing up for the rights of the average working class. My grandfather was an organizer of Local 68 of the Association of Western Pulp and Paper Workers Union at Publishers Mill in Oregon City. My father spent years as president of the same union fighting for workers' rights in a time there weren't any. I started my run in politics when I observed an injustice in our Municipal Court system.
As I became more involved in politics I have testified in many public meetings regarding our taxes and utility rates. As our elected and appointed officials smile and vote for higher rates and then ask for more, I have spoken out against such increases. While some taxes do need to be raised to support essential services, not all of the increases fall into that category. The government is able to push these changes because most of you are unaware they are even happening. I try to attend all of the city meetings and carry forward the thoughts you've shared with me, fighting for you and your rights.
Almost everyone wants a new library in Gladstone. When the city foolishly sued the county, we spent tens of thousands of our dollars on a wasteful lawsuit. I filed the recall against two city councilors who were the biggest supporters of the lawsuit, then spent hundreds of hours collecting signatures. After the voters removed the councilors, we were able to drop the lawsuit and come to an agreement with the county. The mayor and county commissioners then requested my help to pass this new library measure. It passed and the road is clear now for us to get our much deserved and overdue library.
I love our parks and will defend them against any sale or development. They are one of Gladstone's biggest assets next to the people. I would like to see the Olson Wetlands area and undeveloped green areas around them be brought into our park registry. I believe having a park and protecting the wetlands is better than letting any developer line their pockets by shoehorning an apartment complex into that untouched treasure. I spend many hours each year organizing cleanups in our parks to keep them as pristine as possible.
Some of the community events and activities I participate in are:
• Gladstone Traffic and Safety Commission
• Gladstone Historical Society president
• Gladstone Community Garden Association - Growing extra produce for those in need
• SOLVE cleanup events - officially adopted High Rocks
• Santa's helper delivering food and gifts at Christmas
• Storage of Library Foundation book donations
• Transportation System Plan Advisory Committee
• Planning Commission Interview Panel
• Library Political Action Committee
• Celebrate Gladstone - planning community events for holidays
You voted with me on the recall and library issues. I hope you will find me worthy of your vote this election. I pledge to represent you and your rights as a city council member. There are a few other positions open this year on the council. Here are my recommendations:
Mayor: Tammy Stempel. Tammy has done a great job in the center seat and is open to creative funding of projects (rather than the typical new or increased tax). Her positive energy and open nature helps push Gladstone to a much needed more transparent government.
Seat 3: Frank Hernandez. Frank has the experience and temperament we need to move forward in Gladstone. He was recommended 5 to 1 during the council appointment process in the summer of 2017.
If you would like to know more, please visit my website at billosburn.com.
Bill Osburn is a candidate for Gladstone City Council.