Patric Hayes is running against Rich Hartman for Ocean Shores City Council Position 7. After seeing who the OS firefighters union gave their stamp of approval to (“The Three Amigos”: Hartman, Lisa Scott and Eric Noble), I asked each candidate to forward their answers. Here’s what Hayes answered:
“I chose not to answer the Union survey. Why? Frankly, I don’t approve of how the Union has been involved in our city’s politics. I don’t approve of its shenanigans that got our previous fire chief terminated. I don’t approve of how the Union traded an endorsement to the mayor for the illegal termination. The Union has cost this city over $1 million in judgements and legal fees. And, it asked each of us questions like:
･ If elected, will you meet and confer with the leadership of IAFF Local 2109 in a timely manner when requested? – This is not the responsibility of a council member. We do not have access to staff or deal with the Union. This is strictly the responsibility of the mayor.
･ If elected, would you support the careers of our members and fight to prevent loss of jobs, wages and benefits. – I support whatever is best for the city. Saying that, it is situational. It depends on the event or events leading up to making some kind of evaluation. One size does not fit all and I will not make a promise I cannot keep.
I’m not surprised that its questionnaire was all about what WE as council people can do for the Union and how can we do MORE for it?
I’d be more impressed if it had asked questions such as:
･ What can WE (the Union) do to better serve you, the City Of Ocean Shores?･ We figured out a way to cut overtime by bringing in temporary help – and saving the cost of benefits (like we do on the Fourth of July). Do you approve?
Now don’t confuse my dislike of the Union and its practices with not supporting our fire personnel. It’s similar to liking individual members of a sports team but not cheering for the team.
I support our police and fire personnel (my older brother worked for the Anaheim Police and younger brother worked for the Riverside Fire Department). In fact I support hiring the three SAFER grant EMTs and the additional fire person advocated by the mayor, with the caveat that we have the funding sources that she had outlined previously (taxes from new construction and already having surplus money in the General Fund).
Indeed, I’m also in favor of improving the South End Fire Station. The debate is shall we invest in rehabbing the existing shell of the building or possibly looking at a modular solution (at a reduced cost). This issue will not be decided by a single council person, but the whole city council, collectively, and with the best interests of Ocean Shores in mind.
What I find interesting is that only five members of this union can even vote here. The rest don’t even live in our city. Thank goodness we have secret ballots. Perhaps these five don’t agree with the choices the Union has made.”