Letter to the editor: Councilmember responds to accusation of ‘scare tactics’

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Editor:

This is a response to a letter to the editor on My Edmonds News 9/10/17 from Maggie Fimia regarding me.

I don’t usually respond to political rhetoric during election but when the writer is not truthful and has a concerning past, I must respond.

This issue occurred during a forum sponsored by Edmonds Indivisible and ENAC. I was on a family vacation and not present for the event. I did submit a short statement to read.

Ms. Fimia indicated in the statement “I suggested that there were shadowy unidentified individuals who would pave over the marsh if they were not stopped” and “I believe that fake news and scare tactics influence some people of Edmonds.” Ms. Fimia indicates I put out these scare tactics to scare people into voting for who I want. That I am trying to influence the port races.

My statement was; “I have fought for many areas of the environment for our citizens. Daylighting Willow Creek and preservation of the marsh from uninformed sources that would rather see the marsh paved over instead of rehabbing the grand Marsh that it was when I was a child and played near it.”

She indicates I’m spreading fake news when she is the one trying to control the elections, again. She is fear mongering to get people to support her candidates? I was born and raised here unlike Ms. Fimia. I remember the marsh when it went all the way out to 104 and Dayton before it was paved over. Ms. Fimia keeps trying to tie my comments on the Port of Edmonds when the port wasn’t mentioned in my message period. I am not laying blame on the port for the current development as she would like you to believe.

I would suggest everyone be careful of Ms. Fimia and her motives. While elected council and deputy mayor in Shoreline she was involved in a gigantic public records lawsuit that was finally settled a few years ago (2013), costing the city a judgment to plaintiff plus legal and staff time to defend.

According to The Seattle Times June 28, 2013 (O’Neill vs. Shoreline):

“The suit originated at a September 2006 City Council meeting in which former Deputy Mayor Maggie Fimia read aloud an email she said she had received from Beth O’Neill. O’Neill, who was attending the meeting, had not sent the message. So she requested a copy of it to see who did. But before handing it over, Fimia removed the part of the email that indicated the sender. And then she deleted the email itself.

The city then decided not to dissect Fimia’s computer to get the email’s metadata.

O’Neill sued, claiming the city had violated the Public Records Act.

A Superior Court judge disagreed, but that ruling was overturned in 2010 by the state Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court’s order made Washington the second state in the country in which metadata is considered part of a public record, Earl-Hubbard said.

The city agreed to pay $100,000 for violating the law.

Most of the additional money ordered Friday is going to Earl-Hubbard and other attorneys who have been representing the O’Neills for free.”

You may also look at a lawsuit violation of Public Meeting Act that Ms. Fimia was involved in while elected in Shoreline.

From The Seattle Times dated September 17, 2007:

“Shoreline city taxpayers have paid dearly for the arrogance of some of their elected officials who did not care about conducting the people’s business in public.

“Fortunately, citizens will pay no more after the Shoreline City Council paid $159,000 Friday to settle a lawsuit alleging one former and three current council members violated the state Open Public Meetings Act. Maggie Fimia, Robert Ransom, Janet Way and former member John Chang were accused of deciding to fire a city manager and hire a new one without following the law that governs such decisions. Former Mayor Constance King and another former council member, Kevin Grossman, have taken some criticism for filing the lawsuit in the first place. But the fault is not theirs; they did a service in alerting citizens of the violations.

“The fault lies with the stubbornness of the accused council members, who still have not admitted wrongdoing despite compelling evidence. A violation of the act carries a penalty of $100 per person per violation. If they had paid the fines, they would have been out a nominal amount of money.

“In addition to the $159,000 paid to cover plaintiff’s legal fees, the city of Shoreline has spent around $350,000 in legal fees.

“And for what? To defend elected officials trying to make a point that is indefensible?

“Come on.

“In settling the lawsuit, the council reaffirmed its commitment to the law, which reads in part:

“‘The people, in delegating authority, do not give their public servants the right to decide what is good for the people to know and what is not good for them to know. The people insist on remaining informed so that they may retain control over the instruments they have created.’

“Every municipal government and school board ought to schedule for its next workshop a review of the Open Public Meetings Act. Shoreline should be the first case study.”

Last but not least, we have Ms. Fimia as the ring leader of the Edmonds Downtown Elections Group two years ago that recruited people to run for office that agreed with the group’s development goals on our waterfront. Prospected members were required to keep everything secret and they met in secret places such as fire stations. This group’s documents were publicized once a new “recruit” felt it was ethically wrong and handed their “secret” information to others.

Now Ms. Fimia asks me “to stop insulting our intelligence”? Clearly Edmonds can’t trust her nor her tactics, Just ask the taxpayers of Shoreline.

Adrienne Fraley-Monillas
Edmonds City Council

6 COMMENTS

  1. I was wondering why she had moved to Edmonds and was no longer in politics. Wow! I will view her editorials in this light now knowing her past.

  2. If ever there was a case of “shooting the messenger”, this is it. Ms. Fimia’s life as a politician has zero relevance in this matter; it has been presented by Ms. Fraley-Monillas simply to divert attention away from the legitimate claims made against herself.

    Regarding statements made about paving the marsh over, here’s a relevant comment recently made on MEN by another writer: “don hall September 11, 2017 at 12:42 pm
    Council Member Fraley Monillas, Posted on her face book page a month or so ago that she voted to save the marsh from being paved over. I follow the council and the issues and never heard or read anything about paving over the marsh. When I questioned her about it she did not responded and unfriended me. There are some politicians who will say anything to get their friends elected. I would hope this election rises above these kind of remarks.”

    Regarding the allegation that Ms. Fraley-Monillas is trying to influence Port elections, surely that is a fact since she has endorsed candidates Angela Harris and Susan Paine.

  3. I agree with Mr. Wambolt, Why are we even discussing Ms Fimia? I always get suspect when a topic is changed completely…That is usually the point where politicians start talking about “oh, the children.” suspect for sure…

  4. And to Diane Buckshnis, shouldn’t you give Ms Fimia the benefit of doubt? I would possibly meet Ms Fimia and judge for yourself what she views not hearsay.

  5. Joy Trevino and Ron Wambolt, make very good points. Adrienne Fraley-Monillas, once again is showing her “bully” side. Adrienne, you are stating who can and cannot be trusted for her tactics? Surely you jest.

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