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Burbank campaign news: General Election ballots mailed out today, candidates Gabel-Luddy and Frutos on the hunt for votes

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Photo: FLLewis/Media City G -- Burbank Municipal Elections sign

Photo: FLLewis/Media City G -- Burbank Municipal Elections sign

 The ballots for the April 12 Burbank General Elections were mailed out today. Burbank City Clerk, Margarita Campos, says the ballots were sent to all 55, 975 registered voters in the city. Meanwhile, the two City Council candidates on the ballot are burning up the campaign trail.

Last Sunday, Bob Frutos and Emily Gabel-Luddy, along with about two dozen other residents, braved the stormy weather to attend the “Police and Human Relations” event at the Buena Vista Library; where Burbank Police Chief, Scott LaChasse, gave a frank and informative presentation about the state of the BPD and how the department is dealing with all those lawsuits and investigations swirling around it.

Photo: FLLewis/Media City G -- Burbank City Council candidate Emily Gabel-Luddy (orange sweater) attended the "Police and Human Relations" event Sunday, March 20 at the Buena Vista Library in Burbank

Photo: FLLewis/Media City G -- Burbank City Council candidate Emily Gabel-Luddy (orange sweater) attended the "Police and Human Relations" event Sunday, March 20 at the Buena Vista Library in Burbank

The event was hosted by the Burbank Human Relations Council.

Photo: FLLewis/Media City G -- Burbank Human Relations Council President John Brady and Burbank Police Chief Scott LaChasse at the "Police and Human Relations" event, Buena Vista Library in Burbank, March 20, 2011

Photo: FLLewis/Media City G -- Burbank Human Relations Council President John Brady and Burbank Police Chief Scott LaChasse at the "Police and Human Relations" event, Buena Vista Library in Burbank, March 20, 2011

 This week, Burbank Police Commissioner, Bob Frutos, is in full campaign mode. Last night, Frutos spoke to a group of residents at a “meet and greet” on North Orchard Drive.

 Photo: FLLewis/Media City G -- Burbank City Council candidate Bob Frutos made a pitch for support at a "meet and greet" on North Orchard Drive in Burbank, March 21, 2011

Photo: FLLewis/Media City G -- Burbank City Council candidate Bob Frutos made a pitch for support at a "meet and greet" on North Orchard Drive in Burbank, March 21, 2011

 Photo: FLLewis/Media City G -- City Council candidate Bob Frutos spoke at a "meet and greet" event on North Orchard Drive in Burbank March 21, 2011

Photo: FLLewis/Media City G -- City Council candidate Bob Frutos spoke at a "meet and greet" event on North Orchard Drive in Burbank March 21, 2011

Frutos has another get together with voters planned for tomorrow night. Also, he told me he’s door knocking and has volunteers phone banking. Both candidates are in that final push for votes with the ballots out and the deadline to return them, April 12, fast approaching. The candidates are vying for one vacant seat on the city council.

 Earlier this month , I e-mailed Burbank Planning Board member, Emily Gabel-Luddy, five questions and she sent back five responses. I posted my questions and Luddy’s answers on this blog March 11.

Recently, City Council candidate Frutos returned his responses to my five questions. Here are the questions and answers:

You’ve had a number of your campaign signs vandalized or stolen, right? How many signs? When did this start happening?

 Over the last month, I have had over 30 signs stolen from the front lawns of supporters.

How do you feel about campaign dirty tricks?

Campaign dirty tricks display a lack of integrity and a lack of respect for differences in view points. They are childish games that discourage public participation and debate.

You’re a full time Los Angeles police officer. Do you think you can handle the demands of the job as a member of the Burbank City Council?

As a senior officer, I am able to change my work schedule accordingly which will allow me to be able to serve as a council member.  I also have the flexibility to select days off during the month which will allow me to be available to the residents of Burbank. I have served for 9 years on the Police Commission and I also served on the Charter Review Committee. I have never missed any meetings. I take my commitments seriously and will make that same commitment to the residents of Burbank as a council member.

Scott LaChasse and several members of his command staff are from the LAPD. Do you think that will hamper your efforts as a council member in making the tough choices for rebuilding the troubled Burbank P.D.?

Not at all, it will compliment the reform process of the organization to a more transparent and cohesive working relationship between command staff, rank and file and the city council.

What do you think about the handling of the North Screenland Drive sidewalk controversy by the city council and city staff? What would you have done differently?

I believe in neighborhood empowerment. The best solutions to our problems are found when we work with and listen to the voice of the people. The city failed to do this in this case and it caused a lot of deep emotions between neighbors, which concerns me. The neighborhood should have been engaged during the early stages of this discussion and solutions should have been explored to address concerns to reach the best possible consensus.

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