Burlington Derailed — The Continuing Story

28 October

Hawkeye Refuses to Publish Marzeck Letter


Marzeck Sets Record Straight - Tapp Fails to Respond (Again)

Burlington Derailed received this letter from Kip Marzeck today. The Hawkeye probably won't run it before the election because it would not feature their endorsement of Tim Hoschek in a favorable light. I don't understand that reasoning. Afterall, it is "good copy" and that's why the Hawkeye endorsed Hoschek.

Spike

Mr. Marzeck's unedited letter in it's entirety.

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Dear Letters Editor:

For those who wondered what happened to my investigation of the Des Moines County Board of Supervisors’ $17,500 payment to Randy Danniel on March 16, this letter is my final report. I have been slowly but quietly gathering as much other information as I could for the last few months.

The result, in a nutshell, is that I withdrew my preliminary complaint to the Iowa Office of Citizens’ Aide Ombudsman against any or all of the supervisors on Monday, Oct. 25. My contact at the Ombudsman’s Office, Angie Dalton, and I agreed that a state investigation was not warranted based upon the circumstances. We both believe that the supervisors have learned a lesson from this experience and hopefully will not repeat it again.

This withdrawal excludes my other original complaint against the city of Burlington for an allegedly improper closed meeting on Jan. 26. That complaint is still open and being investigated.

In addition, the Iowa Attorney General’s Office declined my request to investigate Randy Danniel, saying that this matter was basically a local political squabble. I have come to believe that this is indeed the case. No local city or county law enforcement officials were interested in pursuing the matter either.

In June I sent two letters to all three supervisors asking them to answer 10 questions in writing and provide copies of five documents. I never received written replies from any of them, although the County Auditor’s Office gave me copies of the five public documents. Ed Blow told me that he wrote me a letter in early July, which County Attorney Pat Jackson advised him not to send, because neither David Miller nor Tim Hoschek was going to send one, and I would just forward it to the Hawk Eye anyway. If memory serves, Pat did not tell me this when I talked to him, but it makes sense, because that is what I would have done then.

I also asked SEIRPC Executive Director Brian Tapp several months ago to provide me with written documentation to support his claim that he could not have had a verbal contract extension agreement with Randy Danniel because he has a $25,000 legal spending limit on unfunded projects without going through a competitive bid process.

I never received that written proof, even after my repeated efforts to get it during July and August. I was told that SEIRPC was busy with their new Regional Transit Authority duties and that they would find the documentation when they could. I was finally asked not to keeping bothering them, because they had my phone number. I got tired of hearing excuses and just waited for them to get back to me; I am still waiting… Meanwhile, a search by the DMC Auditor’s Office was unable to come up with any such documentation, so I still cannot verify Brian Tapp’s claim.

I eventually got most of my major questions from the two letters to the supervisors answered through telephone interviews of various people. At various times I talked to Brian Tapp, Bruce Slagle, Doug Worden, Mike Campbell, Dan Luttenegger, Alex Oblein, Mike Johnstone, Tim Hoschek, David Miller, Ed Blow, Pat Jackson, Carol Copeland, Randy Danniel and other city, county and regional planning staff members. On one side of the debate are Tim Hoschek and most Burlington city officials except Mike Campbell; on the other side are most of the other people mentioned.

Readers of the Hawk Eye are aware of all the mudslinging that has occurred this year regarding this and other matters. I will leave it up to you to decide which county or city officials should be re-elected. I feel that everyone involved made mistakes in handling this situation and many – but not all – of them have admitted this to me. Far too many people told me that Tim Hoschek was originally on board with paying Randy Danniel no matter what and was therefore not really blindsided by Randy’s submitted claim for me to hold him blameless. Of course, had Randy submitted his written invoice to Brian Tapp first and had it officially rejected before resubmitting it to the county, I would never have considered it improper originally.

I also believe that not all parties gave me the whole truth and nothing but the truth, but without having every area public official involved in any way investigated (a daunting task for state investigators with a heavy case load), there is realistically no way to verify this.

From his descriptions to me, I believe that Randy Danniel did provide valuable services to our area and possibly could have provided more if the city of Burlington had not sued the railroad. But did we receive $35,000 or even $17,500 worth of service? I do not really know. You will have to decide for yourself.

I changed some of my own original opinions on this matter after hearing both sides, but it took me many man-days’ worth of personal investigation and about $15-$20 in out-of-pocket expenses. It would be unreasonable to expect every citizen to do the same on every issue of public importance and the local newspaper only has space for so many details. If you think the Hawk Eye could have done better, then write a letter to the editor.

I still could have filed a formal complaint to the Ombudsman’s Office against David, Ed, Tim and Brian for not providing me with the written documentation I requested long ago, but that seems rather pointless at this time. The jobs at the shops are gone, Randy’s been paid part of what he says he’s owed and it’s up to him to file any new complaints. I do, however, want to thank all the staff in the city, county and regional planning offices who were so helpful to me in providing some documentation.

Sincerely,
George L. (Kip) Marzeck, Jr.
14:58:00 - SPIKE - No comments

20 October

Hoschek Puffs - False Accusations Blurted Out


Truth Escapes Tim Hoschek during KBUR Radio Forum

Today Des Moines County Supervisor Tim Hoschek scrambled for votes today thinking that making false accusations will win him votes. During a Candidate's Forum on KBUR Hoschek blamed all of his problems on everyone else.

When will the public wake up and realize that he is a charlatan dressed up as a Supervisor?

Sorry Tim, I forgot.

C-H-A-R-L-A-T-A-N, someone who pretends to have knowledge or ability that he does not possess

Again.

C-H-A-R-L-A-T-A-N,

T-I-M H-O-S-C-H-E-K

Vote No Hoscheck 2004
17:17:00 - SPIKE - No comments

06 October

Edwards Get Ugly on KBUR Talk Show


Burlington Mayor Edwards Charms the Audience with His Immaturity

Shows total lack of professional conduct.

When an elderly lady called the KBUR talk show to chastise Mayor Edwards about job loss, Edwards chose his usual immature manner to respond. Talking through his teeth at her in a raised voice Edwards shifted the blame.

Mike, you talk to everyone like that when they criticize or disagree with you?

What about manners? Forget them?

SPIKE
14:10:00 - SPIKE - No comments

04 October

MAYOR EDWARDS 9 MONTHS TOO LATE TO UNDERSTAND


"Now" is the time?

Where were you 9 months ago?

In an article today Burlington Mayor Mike Edwards realizes that NOW is the time to look for a reuse for the BNSF Shops.

"I'd like to talk with local economic development officials to see what types of thoughts everyone has on just what that facility could be reused for," Edwards said.

Too late Mike. You should have listened to Randy Danniel in your meeting on January 9 with the BNSF. Maybe by now you could have someone ready to move in there. Maybe even GE. Or one of the other 8-10 ideas he had.

Better yet, maybe you should just read the report he wrote.

But I guess it was “bogus,” huh? Kinda like your flawed $20,000 Traction Motor Study?

Your fishing hole is dry, boy. Back to school. You weren't paying attention.
23:41:00 - SPIKE - No comments