April 11, 2014
"I expect to be able to respond to your request by April 22, 2014"

Wednesday's post noted that King County Councilmember Larry Phillips' office fulfilled a public records request from pro-Proposition 1 campaign manager April Putney with record speed. The request was most likely pre-arranged, with Putney filing the request to make it "official" so Phillips could hand over information she knew was already compiled.

While Phillips' staff fulfilled Putney's request in just a day, the request asked for any lists of identified transit advocates from other council offices as well, which went through the normal process. The timeline for that request is interesting, though, in that council staffers were given a significantly shorter amount of time to comply than in, for instance, my current public records request.

That's notable because Putney's request included all nine council offices, while mine requested only communications between Phillips' office and Putney. Staffers were told to respond to Putney's request with any relevant records to the clerk's office in 13 days. Assuming the usual four day buffer seen in other county records requests, that would be a 17-day turnaround to Putney's request.

Contrast that with my request that was limited to Phillips' office. The county told me they could fulfill that request (and it's not a guaranteed date) in 36 days...which happens to be April 22, Proposition 1's election date. Which I'm sure is purely coincidental.

Posted by Adam Faber at April 11, 2014 08:31 AM | Email This
Comments
1. Just give Larry's office a call and ask for the same list they gave April..it should be the same list...right? Are they saying they cannot produce the same list again in a day or less? That would be very troubling. One might believe they are witholding information in advance of an election for political purposes.

Posted by: Smokie on April 11, 2014 09:02 AM
2. Just give Larry's office a call and ask for the same list they gave April..it should be the same list...right?

Wrong. Adan's request is totally different:

"That's notable because Putney's request included all nine council offices, while mine requested only communications between Phillips' office and Putney. "

The request to all nine council offices wasn't for their communications records, but for any list of transit advocates they might have. Presumably, it's far easier and less obtrusive to send a single, already-prepared list than it is to search and organize all communications records between an entire office and one citizen, but Adam simply ignores this important distinction.

The request was most likely pre-arranged...

Got any support for that a accusation? Didn't think so.

Posted by: tensor on April 11, 2014 04:24 PM
3. Damn, Adam. You've been gone a while but it's certainly been worth the wait. Two breaking news stories in a week!

Can't wait for the followup. I think you're on to something here. It's almost as if politicians are more responsive to constituents and organizations working for causes they support than for causes they oppose.

Keep working on it. I'm sure you'll blow the lid off of "list-gate" in no time. This is the kind of story that will put Sound Politics back on the map for sure!

Posted by: scottd on April 11, 2014 04:35 PM
4. Tensor...you are technically correct the requests are different. What is you read on the one-day turnaround from Putney - why was it so quick?

Posted by: Mike Meredith on April 11, 2014 05:41 PM
5. "It's almost as if politicians are more responsive to constituents and organizations working for causes they support than for causes they oppose."

It's also possible they'd prioritize a succinct request, one relevant to their constituents in an upcoming election, ahead of a vast fishing expedition, which is relevant only to one guy posting sporadically on an obscure blog.

Keep working on it. I'm sure you'll blow the lid off of "list-gate" in no time. This is the kind of story that will put Sound Politics back on the map for sure!

We can hope, but let's face it, we're long past the glory days here, when poster after poster was sure that dwelling with OCD-like focus on every detail of King County's election processes would somehow magically reveal King County's voters hadn't really preferred a liberal Democrat to a conservative Republican. Good times...

Posted by: tensor on April 11, 2014 05:49 PM
6. Phillips is an example of another politician who is self-serving and doesn't care about serving as he was elected to do. Another hack on the County council.

That aside, don't be a lemming and a chump and vote NO on Prop. 1. Tax revenues have been higher than projected before when this proposal was drafted. KC Government is in an expansion mode, but expanding government is also anti-freedom.

Posted by: KDS on April 11, 2014 10:19 PM
7. To reiterate, don't be a chump or a lemming. Instead, vote NO on Prop. 1.

Posted by: KDS on April 12, 2014 08:02 AM
8. The gutless pussies on the left need a whole cadre of support from PR flacks, unions, NGOs, academia and the alleged media referees on their team in order to compete.

Planting transit advocates just like Obama plants media ops with lab coated doctors to sell the crap that Americans do not want.

The great thing about having Republicans in office is not that their equally self serving bullshit accomplishes anything. But at least then the press does its proper function of proving and keeping government in line.

We may not win in WA, but at least we are not fucking cowards who need the safety blanket of protection from the media to pretend we are legit.

Posted by: Mike on April 12, 2014 08:31 AM
9. Of course Larry may just be responding to April more quickly becasue she is to close to Larry and his party. April if a Staffer over at Futurewise and has a close relationship to all things King County and Democrat. April and her organization are one of the unofficial, offical front groups for gettting the campaigning that King County and the Democrats want done without their fingerprints on it for legal reasons.

You can see they are rewarded with appointment to committees and commissions to deliver the desired outcomes by the County. They are defacto funded operatives. Ask for information on Prop 1? Larry is right on that.

Posted by: Smokie on April 12, 2014 01:05 PM
10. 4. ...you are technically correct the requests are different. What is you read on the one-day turnaround from Putney - why was it so quick?

While I really don't think there's anything "technical" about recognizing Adam's blazingly obvious equation of two very different requests, I also can't say whether or not the fulfillment of Ms. Putney's request was "quick." Adam has now posted twice on this topic in half a week, making that claim several different ways, without ever once giving any supportive evidence, statistics, or data -- just his own repeated saying so. With his attempted conflation, noted above, of two different requests, I'm not giving him the benefit of the doubt.

As for why Council Member Phillips could fulfill her request easily, MikeBoyScout already provided one possible answer, in the very first comment to Asam's first post on this topic:

Alternatively, maybe Councilmember Phillips just asked Sound Transit to execute a query from their database of transit supporters?

Or, Phillips' office keeps a database on the topic of each communication from a constituent, as a legitimate tool for tracking the concerns of voters. Adam' dark huffing and puffing aside, there's nothing unusual or sinister about doing so, and nothing Herculean about querying the results.

Posted by: tensor on April 12, 2014 06:40 PM
11. @10 tensor on April 12, 2014 06:40 PM,

Clearly Adam Faber (HACK!) and the (un)SP peanut gallery have uncovered the conspiracy of the King County Democrats to support "Proposition No. 1 Sales and Use Tax and Vehicle Fee for Transportation Improvements" which the King County Council supported unanimously on Feb 18th.

Compare that with Adam Faber (HACK!) whose hobby horse has not even received a Council vote, which I'm sure is purely coincidental to his unspecified request not being fulfilled as quickly as he wants.

There's no hiding this. King County Council and Democrats are absolutely operating under different priorities from the (un)SP peanut gallery!

Posted by: MikeBoyScout on April 13, 2014 10:13 AM
12. So if Phillips has the list of who he queried, why didn't he provide that to satisfy his offices portion of the request in one day? If Sound Transit was the source of Phillips list and they had already provided it to him to satisfy Putney's request, why didn't they simply provide it to all 9 members when the second request came in?

Here's a crazy idea: Maybe Philips was eager to support a cause that he advocated by promptly sending useful information he already had available. And maybe he didn't give a rat's ass about harassing requests from unemployed right-wing hacks, so he instructed his staff to just do what was legally required.

Whaddya think, Smokie? Does that sound likely?

Posted by: scottd on April 13, 2014 10:29 AM
13. Phillips a narrow minded political hack willing to manipulate the system to get what he wants? Sure, I can buy that. It is SOP for King County and Dems that run it. Dow Constantine and Fred Jarrett can be thrown in for good measure as lying obstructionists.

Whadya think Scottd, does it sound likely that the King County Democrats running this Prop. 1 don't give a damn about the impacts to taxpayers and are only concerned with keeping the unions happy and contributing to their campaigns?

Posted by: Smokie on April 13, 2014 11:21 AM
14. .
@14 Smokie on April 13, 2014 11:21 AM,

Why did Adam Faber (HACK!) make his unspecified request (which I'm sure is purely coincidental) of only Councilman Phillips?

Why didn't he make a request of Reagan Dunn (R), or Kathy Lambert (R), or Jane Hague (R) or Pete von Reichbauer (R)?
[All of whom voted for and support "Proposition No. 1 Sales and Use Tax and Vehicle Fee for Transportation Improvements"]

Clearly the 4 Republicans on the King County Council are only concerned with keeping the unions happy and contributing to their campaigns.

The conspiracy widens!

Posted by: MikeBoyScout on April 13, 2014 11:36 AM
15. Well, Smokie, did Philips do anything illegal? Do you think supporting transit funding is going to keep him or other King County Democrats from being re-elected?

Seems to me that he's serving his constituents. Sorry if you don't like that. Well, not really. Listening to folks like you whine is one of the few positive benefits I get from this site. Thanks!

Posted by: scottd on April 13, 2014 11:37 AM
16. Clearly the 4 Republicans on the King County Council are only concerned with keeping the unions happy and contributing to their campaigns.

The conspiracy widens!
Posted by MikeBoyScout at April 13, 2014 11:36 AM

As long as you keep making up stuff, your so-called conspiracy will continue in your own mind. Phillips is one of your boys, therefore he passes for a shameless HACK. Faber was investigating and did not get an answer - big shock - he did not receive one from the HACK of the County Council. The heart of the matter is a Government which refuses to live within its means.

@15 - stupid questions that only low information voters would ask. It will not be a tragedy by any means if Prop. 1 fails, except in the eyes of the Democrats on the County Council - they won't have the opportunity to extort more public money this time. Vote NO on Prop. 1 !

Posted by: KDS on April 13, 2014 09:33 PM
17. ...stupid questions that only low information voters would ask.

Answer scottd's question: do you think Phillips did anything illegal? If not, what's the point of Adam's document request, or of his two whiny, bitter posts about it?

Faber was investigating ...

That word does not mean what you think it means.

Posted by: tensor on April 13, 2014 11:12 PM
18. Gee Mikey why don't you ask the 4 Republicans on the Council why they voted for putting Prop 1 on the ballot. I am certain you are on a first name basis with them.

I don't really care what the reasons are, although if I was to guess I would say they were going to be out voted anyway so they bargined for some leverage on other issues since they don't get a lot of Union Money or support. Phillips,
Constantine and the other Democrats do get a lot of union support and contributions. They are promoting their own self interests and lining their pockets.

Posted by: Smokie on April 14, 2014 05:20 AM
19. I don't really care what the reasons are, although if I was to guess I would say they were going to be out voted anyway so they bargined...

Aside from maybe, just maybe, they voted for a policy because they thought the policy was correct, how could they have "bargained" if "they were going to be out voted anyway"?

Posted by: tensor on April 14, 2014 09:55 AM
20. Doesn't really matter at this point does it tensor. Phillips is an obstructionist political hack, who has done a terrible job of oversight at METRO. He gets his cut, he doesn't care how much it costs taxpayers. Earlier in the campaign Phillips was confronted by the fact the foot ferry from alki to downtown was an under performing money pit. He was asked why he didn't move to eliminate the waste of the redundant foot ferry..his response? Well there isn't money there to save METRO. That's your King County Council, led by Dow Constantine. Protecting underperforming programs while extending a hand for more money.

Posted by: Smokie on April 14, 2014 11:42 AM
21. From the May 14th TIMES Story.

"The county runs separately funded water-taxi services; the Vashon Island taxi is usually full, but the West Seattle taxi is mostly empty. Asked whether the latter should be dropped, Councilman Larry Phillips, of Magnolia, said any savings "is fair game," but eliminating the taxi wouldn't fill Metro's gap"

With thinking like this in the oversight role, is it any wonder METRO is in trouble? What has Phillips done about the foot ferry since May? Oh yeah he voted to spend millions more on new boats.

Posted by: Smokie on April 14, 2014 11:49 AM