Final bit of Clark County Council fact-checking
If you haven’t filled out your ballot yet—and let’s face it, with a voter turnout hovering around 15 percent, you probably haven’t—here’s the last slew of candidates whose campaign fliers I haven’t featured yet.
Like I mentioned in my blog post last week, these fliers are pretty heavy on buzzwords, so keeping that in mind, here are my thoughts on what Republican Jeanne Stewart, a chair candidate, Democrat Chuck Green, a District 2 candidate, and Republican Julie Olson, a District 2 candidate, are saying.
The one thing I can say for sure that’s true here is Stewart, a current Clark County councilor, has experience. The Republican candidate was elected to the county council last November, and was a Vancouver City Councilor for 12 years. There’s a lot of campaign promises here, some of which are based in Stewart’s track record—she was, for example, opposed to the light rail and toll components of the failed Columbia River Crossing project—but I don’t think Stewart is calling out much in the way of specific accomplishments here.
Again, Green’s flier is full of promises, but here are the verifiable items on this flier.
Claim: Has over 23 years’ experience serving the Clark County community.
Green has been working in and around Clark County since 1992, when he started working as Clark County’s transportation engineer, eventually becoming the transportation manager. Columbian archives include stories quoting Green while he was in that role. Unfortunately they’re too old to repost here, but I attached a screenshot from our internal archives.
Claim: Has worked in every corner of this district as well as the county as a whole.
I mean, I think working in “every corner” may be a bit of an exaggeration—political pontification and all that—but Green has had his hands on a ton of local projects. In addition to his role at the county, Green also worked for Portland-based Parsons Brinckerhoff, a civil engineering firm, for nearly 13 years, consulting on a number of state and regional projects. Here are two reports to which he’s contributed where his name is listed on the report. He also worked on Washougal’s Transportation Capital Facilities Plan.
Claim: “Julie Olson spent 8 years on the Ridgefield School Board and served as Board President for 6 of those 8 years. Under her leadership and with collaboration of students, staff and the community, school facilities have been modernized to meet the growing needs of a thriving district and is successfully preparing students for a bright future.”
Olson was elected in 2005, took office in 2006 and served through 2013. She spent six of those eight years as the president of the board. There have also been several stories over the years in The Columbian illustrating Olson’s role in pushing for a school levy. You can read two of those here and here. I’ve also asked Olson for other specific examples, and will update this blog post if I hear back.
There are more fliers making their way to my desk–yes, I’ve seen all the glossy David Madore fliers most everyone in Clark County has–but I’ve covered every candidate from whom I’ve received literature. Feel free to let me know if you think I’ve missed anything or if there’s a stone I left un-turned. And don’t forget to vote.