At the end of the press conference that she and her colleague Tim Burgess held this afternoon on this morning’s court hearing, Council member Lorena Gonzalez took questions on the statement she issued yesterday related to the new evidence accusing Mayor Ed Murray of sexual abuse.
(Updated 9:00pm Monday — scroll down to the bottom for the latest)
Just when you thought the thirty-year-old allegations of sexual abuse against Mayor Ed Murray were finally fading away, the Seattle Times published some new evidence over the weekend: a long-lost Oregon Child Protective Services file in which a services worker discusses the allegations that Murray sexually abused his foster child, Jeff Simpson, and finds them credible.
In response, Council member Lorena Gonzalez issued a statement this morning calling on the Mayor to consider resigning, and if he doesn’t take action by next Monday asking her fellow Council members to consider their options to remove him from office.
I just posted an update to the Candidates page on my site, with the latest information from the state Public Disclosure Commission and the Seattle Ethics and Elections Committee. That includes candidates’ financial disclosure forms, and links to reported campaign contributions.
Of note: Rudy Pantoja has not files financial disclosure forms, which are due within two weeks of filing for candidacy (he filed on December 16th). He also has not reported any campaign contributions.
Sara Nelson filed for candidacy on April 20, so she still has a few more days before her financial disclosure form is due. I’ll post it when it becomes available.
By law, the eleven elected officials in Seattle must file an annual F-1 financial disclosure form as a public record with the city clerk by April 15th of each year. As of this morning (April 24), seven of the nine have done so.
The City of Seattle has a law on the books requiring The City Council to approve any department’s acquisition of surveillance equipment. The law is old and badly in need of updating, as last year’s Geofeedia incident made clear. Yesterday the Council started its formal consideration of a refreshed version more in keeping with today’s technology.
Yesterday Mayor Ed Murray, Council President Bruce Harrell, and Council Budget Chair Tim Burgess replied to Wells Fargo, officially giving notice that the city will not renew their banking services contract. They also noted that they will not be taking up the bank’s offer to terminate the contract before its termination at the end of 2018.
Yesterday Wells Fargo Bank sent a letter to the City of Seattle in response to the Council’s action to cut its business ties with the bank. In the letter, Wells Fargo’s Head of Government and Institutional Banking expresses its disappointment with the decision, invokes some concern trolling over the resulting “unintended consequences for taxpayers,” and defends its investment in the Dakota Access Pipeline project.
Council member Kshama Sawant, her staff, her Socialist Alternative party, and their partner organizations have done some incredible work over the past several weeks in organizing rallies and protests to give voice to opposition to President Trump’s most abhorrent executive orders and policies. But last week she turned the rhetoric knob to 11, and in so doing argued for some actions that are not just ill-conceived but illegal, dangerous to public safety, and a threat to one of the most important foundations of our democracy. And that places her in clear and direct violation of her duties and responsibilities as a City Council member.
This afternoon the City Council ratified an ordinance that sets up the city to cut its ties to Wells Fargo Bank.
In a well-attended meeting of the Affordable Housing, Neighborhoods and Finance Committee this morning, the Council amended and passed out of committee a bill to cut ties with Wells Fargo and strengthen the city’s rules on socially responsible banking and fair business practices. But things got testy along the way.