Burdick & Sten kick off campaigns; Boyles qualifies

ThreecandidatesIt's a big day for Portland politics.

Tonight, Erik Sten is kicking off his campaign for the Portland City Council. Having turned in the requisite number of $5 contributions to qualify for a public campaign, his kick-off event is not a fundraiser. Details at the Erik Sten for City Council website.

This morning, Ginny Burdick is also launching her campaign - by bicycling through a series of eastside neighborhoods. She'll start at 9:15 a.m. at Ladd Circle in Ladd's Addition, and make her way north past Sunnyside School, the Tim King Insurance Agency, and Widmer Brewing. From there, she'll circle back to City Hall downtown by 11 a.m. - where she will officially file for the seat currently held by Erik Sten. More info at GinnyBurdickForPortland.com

Meanwhile, a third candidate - Emilie Boyles - was certified as a public campaign finance candidate earlier this week. Boyles is a non-profit consultant and co-host of the Oregon Voter’s Digest, a cable access public affairs program.


  • (Show?)

    every now and then, i'm glad i'm not in Portland. i miss living there most of the time, but when i read the home page for Ginny Burdick's campaign, i can only see dark days ahead. Erik Sten is stealing tax money from parks and schools to help fund his campaign; Burdick, otoh, is raising money "the old-fashioned way." she does not specify what that way is, but i'm suspecting it rhymes with "frobbyists." her role in attacking Voter-owned Elections makes clear where she stands, and i doubt this campaign is going to be terribly collegial.

    have fun, kids.

  • frank carper (unverified)

    heres what i want to know... will ginny burdick reimburse herself from her campaign for her bicycle mileage? and what about the helmet? is that a reimbursable expense?

  • Tom Civiletti (unverified)

    Burdick's money will come from the same interests that financed the failed attempt to refer Portland's voter-owned elections ordinance: the big wigs, the robber barons, and the parasites on the public good. I can see it now: Peggy Fowler operating a marionette of Ginny Burdick out campaigning, with the voice-over, "We're PGE, we do this every day."

    A strong grassroots effort in favor of Sten, will, I believe, generate the same kind of dynamics that made Tom Potter's campaign successful.

  • Andrew C. (unverified)

    Burdick argues Sten is taking money from schools and parks for his campaign. Well, Burdick's patron (PGE/Enron) collects taxes from us, pockets them, then turns around and hands them to Ginny, instead of the government which funds our schools. So what's the difference, other than Sten's approach being straight-forward and honest, and hers being hidden behind corporate smoke and mirrors?

    How could anyone possibly want a PR flack on City Council?

  • (Show?)

    I agree with TA's assessment of Senator Burdick's website and how she's begining the campaign. Right out of the gate, it's not about what she's done or what she wants to do, it's about slamming Sten and running a negative, scorched earth campaign.

    The Senator's very first quote on her homepage takes a shot at Erik - instead of touting her own record - which says scores about what she's willing to do to win.

    Compare her approach with Lt. Governor Mitch Landrieu, who just today announced that he was jumping into the race for New Orleans Mayor. He not only offered specifics for rebuilding, he went out of his way to praise Ray Nagin, the incumbent.

    From today's story in the Baton Rouge Advocate:

    The younger Landrieu called Nagin a “good man” and a “good public servant.” “I like him, and you should too,” he said. “He did the best he could with what he had, and for that we owe him a debt of gratitude.” Landrieu said five principles will guide his rebuilding vision: Diversity is a strength, not a weakness. Louisiana’s economy must be expanded and diversified. New Orleans must work regionally to compete globally. Value must be added to raw materials, native talent and intellectual capital. Trying to achieve Southern average standards is not good enough.

    It's a sad day when local New Orleans politics is more civil and substantive than Portland.

  • Sirajul (unverified)

    So everyone here is saying Sten has managed his affairs at the city extremely well? Interesting. Not saying I like Ginny - but I think the record against Sten's decision making prowess is pretty overflowing at this point.

    Might be time for a fresh look at other candidates. Being "progressive" is not insurance against bad management.

  • Ross Williams (unverified)

    Not saying I like Ginny - but I think the record against Sten's decision making prowess is pretty overflowing at this point.

    Ginny just managed to spend several hundred thousand dollars and fail to qualify a local initiative for the ballot. I don't think even the water bureau software problem reaches that level of incompetence.

  • (Show?)

    No candidate's perfect, but I'll say this about Erik: he didn't spin, lie or come up with some slick PR conspiracy theory when problems came up. He took responsibility - which is more than I can say for Burdick's big money, underachieving FTF committee.

  • Andrew C. (unverified)

    How exactly was FTF "underachieving"? It made pretty good bank for Burdick's PR firm.

    ... unless they're going to give the money back for losing?

  • roman (unverified)

    At last, a decent candidate against Sten, who's been on the public dole his entire career. Go, Ginny!

  • (Show?)

    I don't think even the water bureau software problem reaches that level of incompetence.

    Don't forget -- When that fiasco happened, Sten led the city in a lawsuit that recovered $7 million from the vendor who was at fault.

    It's fine to address problems, but it's important to include some perspective.

  • rjprogressive (unverified)

    This public service announcement sponsored by the web designer for Sten for City Council.

  • W. Bruce Anderholt II (unverified)

    I'm surprised the incumbent's photo is at the top of the masthead. Whatever happened to ladies first? Maybe the ladies need a new web designer?

    Ginny/Emilie: were you aware they sell advertising on B/O!

  • Steve (unverified)

    "Sten led the city in a lawsuit that recovered $7 million from the vendor who was at fault."

    Not too bad for a computer system that cost CoP $35M and still is not 100%. As a matter of fact, Erik such a good job he worked a deal to get Saltzman to take over and relieve him of responsiblity.

    Face it, he is an apparatchik with no real job skills besides getting elected.

  • Tom Civiletti (unverified)

    Large-scale contracted software systems that deal with large databases are often expensive fiascos. That's what happened to CoP's water bureau, Oregon's DMV, and PGE. PGE's abortive billing system project of several years ago was much more expensive than Portland's miscue. Of course, the rightwing trolls lurking about are interested only in bashing government, especially government lead by progressives. They are as selective in their whining as fundamentalist Christians are in their Bible citations.

  • W. Bruce Anderholt II (unverified)


    If we're voting for Ginny or Emilie, does that make us right-wing trolls? Or do we simply have to disagree with you on the desirability of letting the City of Portland run a PUD?

    To suggest that Erik's oversight and selection of a software vendor was "no worse" than similar screw-ups (elsewhere) is hardly a ringing endorsement. Damning with faint praise, I believe they call it.

    Sure, the water billing software was a twisted, mismanaged, miserable fiasco. But lots of people had twisted, mismanaged, miserable fiascos, and they all got to keep their jobs. Or did they?

    From my perspective, "everybody was doing it" is an ineffective public relations strategy. Erik would be wise to get out in front of this issue and admit that he was in way over his head, that he realized it late in the game, and that it was an important lesson in humility. "It cost the city roughly $XX million dollars and we had to junk it and start from scratch. The good news is..."

    But variations on "sure, he's a son-of-a-bitch, but he's OUR son-of-a-bitch" Mmmmm. Not so much.

  • (Show?)

    Erik would be wise to get out in front of this issue and admit that he was in way over his head, that he realized it late in the game, and that it was an important lesson in humility.

    You must be new to Portland. That's exactly what Erik did.

    Sure, I'm the guy who built the damn thing, but maybe you should read his website.

    As for photo order placement... what conspiracy theory can you cook up about the fact that Burdick's name comes first in the headline. Please, people, it's not about me. It's about the discussion.

    If you don't like it here, go away. Start your own blog. If it's better, the audience will rocket your way. Ask Loaded Orygun - they've been live for about three weeks, and the traffic is already spiking over there.

  • (Show?)

    p.s. to Anderholt - you're voting for Ginny or Emilie? But you are in Lake Havasu, Arizona...

    Just visiting, or do you live there now? How's the weather?

  • W. Bruce Anderholt II (unverified)


    You're looking at the wrong I.P. address. I'm sitting at home in SW Portland. Hevanet is my ISP provider. And I'm leaning towards Emilie.

    But you ought to take a look at Garlynn Woodsong, he lives down in the Bay Area, and has been a very active participant in bashing Portland's Finest.

  • Suzii (unverified)

    Well, I had the pleasure of an extremely ugly pushpoll this evening, crafted to make me think Ginny Burdick is exactly the heroic, pure, progressive angel whom Portland needs. It failed.

    Note that I am not asserting that Ginny Burdick is in any way responsible for this pushpoll, leaving an opening for her to follow the Francesconi model and claim she wasn't involved. But if I were her, I'd do that fast -- and issue cease-and-desists against the actual responsible parties -- because I can't remember the last time I went, in ten minutes, from a positive impression of a person to thinking I'd vote for her only if she were running against, say, Marylin Shannon.

    Ugly, ugly tactic.

  • jim (unverified)

    Kari Chisholm p.s. to Anderholt - you're voting for Ginny or Emilie? But you are in Lake Havasu, Arizona... JK: Here is the SECOND line of the listing in your link:

    OrgName: Electric Lightwave Inc OrgID: ELIX Address: 4400 NE 77th Ave City: Vancouver StateProv: WA PostalCode: 98662 Country: US

    Thanks JK

  • W. Bruce Anderholt II (unverified)

    You're combined obsession with my I.P. address is duly noted. But you're both wrong.

    I'm in the phone book, look it up. My ISP is Hevanet (a locally owned company, the last time I asked). Your IP tracker is wrong, or Hevanet is buying bandwidth from ELI that (somehow) shows an erroneous IP.

    If you're really feeling like stalkers, why not go down to Multnomah County and look up my voter registration card. I'm using my real name, and posting from my home computer. There's no mystery: I'll vote in May like I've voted in every other Oregon election since 1991.

    The mystery is why you guys are so interested in my IP address? Haven't you ever heard of technological error?

    P.S. Can Garlynn keep trashing Portland Cops from San Francisco, or are you going to ask him to cease and desist at B/O?

  • Houtly (unverified)

    I agree with TA's assessment of Senator Burdick's website and how she's begining the campaign. Right out of the gate, it's not about what she's done or what she wants to do, it's about slamming Sten and running a negative, scorched earth campaign.

    Charlie, you know that every campaign against an incumbent has to be about contrast -- why would people want to change horses? You have to say that something's wrong, instead of you just saying you'd be better.

  • rjprogressive (unverified)

    paranoia will destroy ya. Is looking up IP adressess part of the weinermobile strategy for opposition research? Is Erik's record so weak you clones must trash the challenger behind the scenes instead of having open discussions and let voters decide. Sound Nixonian to me

  • W. Bruce Anderholt II (unverified)

    After three clicks (below the fold) on the "Erik Forever" website, I found this....

    The Water Bureau When Erik was Commissioner in charge of the Portland Water Bureau, residential rates increased by an average of less than 2.0% a year—that’s less than inflation, and far less than the rate increases from any other Portland utility during that period. A new billing system installation, however, led to serious problems with many customer accounts. Rather than point fingers and place blame with others, Erik took responsibility for the problems, and set to work to fix them and make things right for the Water Bureau’s customers.

    Erik helped sue the company who sold the city a faulty system, recovering $7 million in a settlement.

    HEY KARI: where's the "humility" part?

    What's a guy got to do to get a cup of contrition in this joint? Two run-on sentences, and Erik's role in the billing software fiasco is history?

    Where's the part where he admits he was in over his head? Where does he acknowledge he ignored staff warnings and acted impulsively? It's like you started out with foour paragraphs (ending with "it was my fault, and I learned an important lesson"), and then decided that brevity trumps clarity, creating two run-on sentences. He studied English at Stanford?

    It's less "I screwed the pooch" and more "I sued the pooch". Erik stepped up to the plate and took full responsibility FOR BLAMING THE VENDOR. Never mind the same vendor has installed software in dozens of other municipalities. Never mind that Erik was repeatedly warned about the danger of too much customization. Never mind that he was told the system wasn't ready to go live, but he green lighted it anyway. It's all the vendor's fault.

    Even the semantics are Nixonian: the company "SOLD IT" to Portland, rather than admitting that Erik "BOUGHT IT" for Portland.

    May the least Socialist win!

  • (Show?)

    Houtly wrote: Charlie, you know that every campaign against an incumbent has to be about contrast

    I think it’s more important for a campaign - challenger or open seat - to be mindful of what voters are bringing to the table. And I just don't think the electorate of Portland is thirsting for more disingenuous, negative political attacks from win-at-any-cost politicians.

    But Im sure that her special interest contributors threatened by Voter Owned Elections just LOVE it. That doesn't mean it'll work with actual voters.

    Take one example: as a 10 year Salem insider - who cut her teeth on the Goldschmidt for Governor campaign - I don’t see “Erik’s been in office 10 years!” as a profitable line of attack for Burdick. I mean, are voters that eager to tap into that good ole Salem know-how??

    It makes her look hypocritical and less credible, but certainly it seems like the type of campaign voters can expect. And that's sad.

  • (Show?)

    Interesting how there isn't a single comment about Boyles offering competition to EITHER Sten or Burdick. If voters are inclined to dump Slik Erik, they may not see Slicker Ginny as a preferable option. Or enough may stick with Erick, and Ginny's the one who goes by the wayside.

    I know it's because Boyles is an unknown quantity that she gets no play here. But she's got 150 large to tell Portlanders exactly what it she offers that's different. I struggle to understand how her automatically viable presence in the race is not a major plus for the electorate, giving us real choices. Don't like the incumbent? Fine. Don't like the legislative carpetbagger with the fancy bling? No sweat--you've got another choice. If this were a typical, non-VOE race, Erik and Ginny would be your only real choices.

    I don't endorse her; I barely know her. But I'm willing to find out, and it's a great thing for Position #2 and the City that she's there, IMO.

  • (Show?)

    Torrid wrote re: Emilie Boyles: But she's got 150 large to tell Portlanders exactly what it she offers that's different. I struggle to understand how her automatically viable presence in the race is not a major plus for the electorate, giving us real choices.

    Your point's well taken about Boyles - she absolutely will be a factor in this race. And getting all of those grassroots contributions is no small accomplishment - bringing new people and new voices into the system is exactly why voters should keep Voter Owned Elections.

    She hasn't gotten a lot of media yet, but given the attacks likely to continue from Burdick's negative big money campaign, Emilie's candidacy is well positioned to benefit. Truthfully, I consider her effort more legitimate than the Senator's - she's at least demonstrated real grassroots support - not just the ability to tap wealthy special interests.

    I think her presence in the race is a walking rebuttal to the distortions coming out of Gard & Gerber, the Burdick campaign, and the FTF committee. I support Erik, but appreciate early signs that this new system is working.

  • joan horton (unverified)

    1) Ginny Burdick is employeed by Gard & Gerber, PGE's PR firm. G&G ran the anti-PUD campaigns in all 4 PUD elections. Whether GB herself had anything to do with this, I don't know. But I do know that she didn't voice any public support for the PUDs, just like most of the other elected Dems.

    2) GB is accepting money from the big corps, including utilities. PGE donated $7,500 to her so far, according to the Feb 1st C&E reports.

    3) GB doesn't support the Voter-Owned Election process. Neither does PGE, or most of the other big downtown businesses.

    Burdick winning the race would be a triple jackpot for PGE. They would 1) replace their main opponent 2) with their own candidate and they would 3) defeat an election process which diminishes their political influence in City Hall.

    Smart move on their part to run their own candidate. Bad move for ratepayers.

  • marco (unverified)

    I look forward to the day when the test of candidates is what they did for the average person.

    By any measure, Sten is a champion of the homeless and the average Joe. And now, because of Emilie Boyles, he'll have to spend the campaign telling people about that work, because she comes from the non profit world. But it shouldn't be any other way.

    The traditional way of campaigning, where people like Ginny Burdick conspire with big donors to grease the skids for their interests, makes the average person's concerns an afterthought. It's flipping gross, and it makes me want to puke.

    If there's no Emilie Boyles in this race, then the whole frame will be about some manufactured "pro-business" ideology, and Ginny Burdick will lie and shill for giant boondoggles for her friends at OHSU, Goldschmidt & Co., and the other castaways from the Francesconi for Mayor fiasco.

    Let's banish that crap forever. The real deal should be about us, the hard details about our lives and how to make them better. We're at a turning point these days, and I'm so happy at the thought of sending these fat cats packing. Let them exercise the influence of their wealth in their home towns of West Linn and Lake Oswego.

  • joan horton (unverified)

    Why people can be so "OutRaged" about the water bureau mess when Enron's ownership of PGE has cost this community about a Billion dollars in bogus taxes and excess charges is beyond me.

    The amount of money that Enron is, yes is, costing us dwarfs the water bureau problem.

    The bogus tax money alone is about $230,000 every single day. 365 days of the year.

  • marco (unverified)

    I just got my water bill. $22 for three months worth of water. It might as well be free. The sewer bill is what's killing me, though I think it's better than dumping our poo in the river.

  • W. Bruce Anderholt II (unverified)

    Enron was forced into bankruptcy, and Lay, Skilling, and several others will all face a jury to answer for their mistakes.

    Providence just fired 4 employees because they mishandled patient data.

    Erik Sten and Company botched a major software implementation, and the only party held to account was the software vendor. Does anybody still believe it was all the vendor's fault?

    This election is the community's first opportunity to hold Erik accountable for a series of mistakes, both operational and political.

    Marco: with all his years on the council, don't you think Erik could have done more for the homeless community than the "10 year plan" and the multi-agency "Project Homeless Connect"? I don't doubt that he cares about the issue, but did he care about it enough to fund it properly? What about lower priority projects that were fully funded?

    With a fraction of the money spent on the Freeway Esplanade or a decade's worth of URDs they could have built and operated homeless shelters for 3,000 people. Instead, we have a great place to take photographs of downtown and condo farms. Coming soon: more light rail, a very expensive Aerial Tram, 2% for Art, and up to $750,000 into Erik's campaign coffers. I wonder if the homeless would have funded those priorities first?

  • Tom Civiletti (unverified)


    It what way would the wate bureau billing fiasco not be the vendor's fault? Certainly, the city was responsible for oversight, but software is not something a non-techie can judge until it comes on line. If the vendor had a history of botched contacts that the city ignored, that would shift more blame to the politicos. I don't know enough of the details to judge. Do you?

  • (Show?)

    I wonder what it is some people think the commissioner of bureaus does. He (or she) doesn't manage the operation day to day. He doesn't make hiring decisions (typically), don't make software purchasing decisions, and don't hang out at the bureau watching the wheels go round. And since Potter came to town, they don't even oversee their own bureau's budget! (It's a team of two, neither of which is the commissioner with oversight).

    So does Sten have ultimate responsibility for cockups in his bureau? Of course. Does it really make sense to blame him for a bad software choice? I sure don't think so.

    As an aside, the LRT is a homeless person's best friend. On a cold night, forking over for a day ticket (or using passes they sometimes give out at shelters and such) and riding between Gresham and Hillsboro is a great way to keep warm and relatively safe.

    Comparing the Water Bureau with Enron is a credibility-endangering kind of comparison.

  • W. Bruce Anderholt II (unverified)

    Okay, T.J., we know you're voting for Sten, and I'm not.

    And we agree that Light Rail is the closest thing to a city funded homeless shelter that Sten has supported.

    But do you really think you can sell the idea that Sten had nothing to do with the Water Billing Software screw-up?

    My comparison to Enron or Providence Hospital is perfectly valid: major screw-up, and people were held accountable. Major screw-up at the Water Bureau, nobody's held accountable. It's ALL the vendor's fault. Uh-huh.

    Here's the most comprehensive critique I've found online

  • (Show?)

    Major screw-up at the Water Bureau, nobody's held accountable. It's ALL the vendor's fault. Uh-huh.

    Fairly or not, the Water Bureau director, and other staff, lost their jobs over this. It's not fair to say no one at the city was held accountable. That includes Commissioner Sten, who's been relentlessly beat up over this in the press and elsewhere. Ultimately its the voters who hold him accountable.

  • (Show?)

    Bruce--isn't the author of that article running against Sten?

  • W. Bruce Anderholt II (unverified)

    Correct, T.J.: the author's name is Dave Lister. He wrote that piece in July 2003, more than two years before filing to run against Sten.

    Given Dave's knowledge of software development, I don't think his recent candidacy should diminish his expertise on the many shortcomings of the City's selection process, or design criteria.

    Frank: whatever happened to the "Buck Stops Here"?

    In Stenlandia, it's more like "The Buck stops in the building next door." You can almost hear the conversation inside the Weinermobile, "what if we scapegoat the vendor, junk their software, and fire some Water Bureau staff, do you think it still comes back to haunt me?"

    I wonder why the 1/28/98 City Council Agenda put the below item under Erik's name?

    .......Commissioner Erik Sten

    ........*96 Authorize a contract with Severn Trent Systems for a customer information system ........in the amount of $3,169,000 and provide for transfer of funds and payment (Ordinance)

    here's a link to the City's self-assessment if you believe they are any less biased than Dave Lister

  • (Show?)

    WBA2, as someone who frequently cries "bias" and "lack of disclosure" on this site

    i.e. even on this thread:"Maybe the ladies need a new web designer?..... Ginny/Emilie: were you aware they sell advertising on B/O!"

    it doesn't seem like your comment above really meets a high level of disclosure, IMO. I mean, despite when the piece was written, you did know that Lister was a candidate for District 2 when you linked to it just now, right?

    So maybe something like: "here's a really swell article in the conservative Brainstorm NW, written by Bruce Lister, one of Sten's opponents" would offer a little more adequate disclosure. And less hypocrisy.

  • W. Bruce Anderholt II (unverified)

    Mr. Burr:

    Not that this thread should be about me, or my I.P. address, or my personal bias against Erik (which I've done nothing to hide). I've never met Dave Lister, I don't make websites for political candidates, and my postings are my own, without coordination for/against any political organization or candidate. You're still mad about the bow-tie comments, aren't you?

    I can assume that most B/O readers know who Dave Lister is (he's contributed here with some frequency), and those who don't recognize his name (or don't read bylines) probably know that Brainstorm NW is on the right of Oregon's political spectrum.

    Dave Lister wrote this article in July 2003, FULLY two and a half years before he filed as a candidate against Erik Sten. That seems to obviate the need for any disclosure, unless you believe Dave began his campaign for the City Council the day he signed on to contribute to BrainstormNW.

    If you will submit that the City of Portland's self-assessment was focused more on finding a "way forward" (rather than detailing what went wrong), then Dave's essay is the most comprehensive I was able to locate. That it was written by a citizen who would later choose to run against Sten nearly 3 years later seems like a footnote, rather than an obfuscation. You may have noticed the absence of footnotes in most blogs.

    A more interesting question for Dave (if he's lurking): "if you hadn't looked into the flawed design and selection criteria established by the City of Portland, would you have considered running for a seat on the City Council?" I'm just guessing, but it wouldn't surprise me if the answer was no.

  • Iz (unverified)

    Let's be real here.

    Erik has spent a lot of years building relationships with a wide variety of people in the community. At the end of the day, people aren't going to turn on Erik because of a mistake he made at the water bureau. He's one of the few politicians who can set down with some of the most powerful people in Oregon one day, and set down with a group of homeless people the next - and know them on a first name basis.

    I don't always agree with Erik's philosophy on things, but he's real and willing to look you in the eye and say, yes, let's do that, or no, not going to happen. If Ginny, or any group of people are going try to take the rug out from underneath Erik they are going to have convince the working and poor voters of this community that they have those relationships built.

    I keep hearing about how mis-managed City Hall is - if we look outside of our own island we will see Portland's got some great stuff going on, and a lot of that has to do with not only Erik, but people willing to build relationships and being open to new ideas - some may fail, but others don't. Risk is the name of the game when you want to change the environment, and Erik's been willing to roll the dice and I respect that. He's got my vote!

    And no, I don't work or volunteer for Erik's campaign...

  • (Show?)

    Frank: whatever happened to the "Buck Stops Here"?

    Exactly. But the voters make the call whether the responsibility has been adequately shouldered or not.

    We have a weird form of city government. Legislators as line managers. I've little confidence in the system letting folks down the line in the food chain speak their piece. It's all about respecting the lines of authority, and not embarassing anyone. There's no protection for whistleblowing, even less for telling the truth.

    Add a lazy press (except for my overworked friends on the city beat!) and a gotcha mentality outside the inner circle of friends...its hard to figure out, at least for me, whether the problem is bad guys, or a bad system dragging down good guys.

  • W. Bruce Anderholt II (unverified)

    LZ: could I paraphrase your support for Erik as,

    Powerful Incumbents Forever! or would

    Erik Sten Forever be more accurate?

    The founding fathers understood that democracy does not flourish when powerful insiders remain in power for long periods of time. Power corrupts. That explains why no U.S. President served more than two terms (until FDR), and the Constitution was amended soon thereafter. Erik is very bright, and I'm sure he can find suitable employment elsewhere.

  • Iz (unverified)

    Bruce, it's Iz not LZ, respectively...

    If that's all you've got Bruce - you're reaching. I give you the poor and working people of Portland, and give me "The founding fathers..." raz mo taz. Although, I do think you are right comparring Erik to FDR - I like that.

  • (Show?)

    Having seen City RFPs (although not on the scale of this purchase), I'm trying hard to figure out the alternative--no specs document at all? I understand Dave's point, and it's well taken: an RFP may seem thought out and comprehensive, but invariably things get changed or added that weren't conceived--and that costs money. There's an argument to be made for better software RFPs, and (while in many respects I curse the day this happened) since that fiasco purchases of that kind would see significant input from OMF, specifically by the Bureau of Tech Services. They have centralized things like that away from the bureaus, and so specs and oversight for major City software are more often prepared by subject experts. Evem the Fire Bureau's limited GIS software purchase was thoroughly vetted by BTS, and that contract was much less than $100K.

    But to answer the point raised by submitting this article for consideration: you're blaming the weakness of the RFP process on Sten?

  • Dave Lister (unverified)

    W. Bruce Anderholt II said:

    "A more interesting question for Dave (if he's lurking): "if you hadn't looked into the flawed design and selection criteria established by the City of Portland, would you have considered running for a seat on the City Council?" I'm just guessing, but it wouldn't surprise me if the answer was no."

    You are right about that, but there's a little more to the story.

    It was actually my looking into that issue that made me begin to think that the city needed more private sector expertise in their decision making process. That's when I volunteered to serve on the Small Business Advisory Council and began looking at all manner of policy that affects the small business community. I started writing my "Eastside Guy" column about the same time. People began encouraging me to run not long after.

    Technology snafus happen and I agree with a previous poster that the commissioner in charge should not be expected to be involved with the project at a programmer's level. But as long as our commission form of government requires that the council members manage bureaus, they should be able to manage. My biggest concern wasn't that the first implementation didn't work out, but rather that the same process was used to initiate the selection for the second implementation.

    That one is now three months beyond the initial implementation date. I was in council the day the three primary contractors were awarded an additional $ 600,000.00 to work the extra three months. The city asked for the extra time, not the contractors. The new date is April 1st. I haven't heard if the contractors will continue to get paid an extra $200,00.00 per month for each month the startup is delayed.

  • betsy Wilson (unverified)

    From Boyles' web site:

    "Now that's out of the way,we can get on to the real issues of Portland's ivability, affordability, and viablity."

    Boyles. For Ivability. Now.

open discussion

connect with blueoregon