FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — Burbank City Council candidate, Lee Dunayer, smiles and chats with folks at a campaign meet and greet on January 29, 2009, at the popular Porto’s Bakery & Cafe on West Magnolia Blvd.
You can tell there’s a city primary election coming up by just driving or walking through the neighborhoods of Burbank. Candidate signs dot the landscape and the windows of businesses, too. Most of those candidates are running for three seats on the Burbank City Council.
The race for Burbank City Council is crowded with 13 candidates: Angela Nakashyan, Human Relations Manager Jess Talamantes, Financial Advisor Lee Dunayer, Litigation Consultant Barbara Sharp, Incumbent/Optometrist Dr. David Gordon, USMC Private Jeffrey W. Prutz, Educator Elise Stearns-Niesen, Associate CIO Kimberly Jo, Planning Consultant Greg Jackson, Advertising Executive Dan Humfreville, Student Trustee Steven Ferguson, Technical Research Analyst Garen Yegparian, and Burbank City Councilmember Dave Golonski.
Burbank, a city of about 100,000 residents, is home to tons of entertainment companies; from small operations to corporate giants like Disney and Warner Bros. On a normal weekday, the population doubles. This means Burbank has some unique problems and situations. The five members on the Burbank City Council hold powerful positions, which require the ability to balance the needs of residents as well as businesses. These are tough economic times for all cities including Burbank. Voters should select lead councilmembers who are not limited by what worked in the past, but are willing to bring in fresh ideas to handle today’s problems and prepare the city for the future.
The other major race on the February 24th ballot is for two seats on the Burbank Board of Education. The contenders are Broadcast Services Manager Gregory Bragg and Incumbents Debbie Kukta and Larry Applebaum.
This is a mail your ballot in municipal election, however, there are drop off points. On Monday ballots will be collected at the City Clerk’s Office in City Hall, the Buena Vista Branch Library, Joslyn Center, McCambridge Recreation Center, and Tuttle Center from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m and Tuesday 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.. For more information contact the City Clerk’s Office at (818) 238-5851.