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Sunday, August 17, 2014

Council Hopeful Bukowski Cries Foul Over Candidate's Statement Debacle

Former Emeryville Councilman Ken Bukowski released a letter yesterday claiming the city clerk's office botched his submission of a voluntary 'candidate's statement' for publication in the Alameda County voter's guide for this November's election as he seeks election to the Council.  City Clerk Karen Hemphill says Mr Bukowski failed to meet a five o'clock deadline.  This will be the former Councilman's second attempt to regain the seat he lost in 2011 amid a plethora of scandals.

City Clerk Fails to Accept Ballot Statement
     by Ken Bukowski
Wednesday Aug 14th at 5pm was the filing deadline [for filing the candidate's ballot statement].  I waited till the last minute to see if there would be other candidates before deciding to file.  At 4:15pm I stopped working on my ballot statement.  When I went to print the statement, my printer would not print.  I spent 15 minutes trying to get it to work.  Unable to do so, I copied the file to a flash drive.
I arrived at City Hall at 4:40pm seeking to go right into the City Clerks Office.  The receptionist stopped me and told me to wait for the City Clerk.  Ten minutes went by.  At 4:50pm I went into the office anyway.
I saw the Deputy City Clerk and we went into the office to process my papers.  When we got to the ballot statement, I asked if he could print it out a copy from my flash drive.  He responded, he would have to talk to Karen Hemphill (City Clerk) about it.  When he left the room to ask her, I was sure she would say no.  I decided to write a quick statement with no ability to use my prepared statement.  When she came into the room, I was just finishing the hand written statement.
She immediately said she would not accept the hand written statement because I was writing after 5pm. She also said I was required to submit an electronic copy of my statement before I arrived at the office.  I was not allowed to print my statement and she refused to accept my hand written statement.  I think she acted unreasonably.  She could have printed my statement and charged me for the copy.  She did not want to be helpful.
According to the City Manager, Karen Hemphill is the Election Official.  She did not want to be involved.  I talked to my attorney and he said it would costly to pursue, and would have to be done immediately.  It's just not worth it.  As a result I have no ballot statement.

Mr Bukowski submitted the following as his Candidate's Statement that was intended to appear in the County voter's guide:
Ken Bukowski
I served on the city council for 24 years from 1987-2011.  During my tenure Emeryville was transformed from an industrial wasteland, into a vibrant community.  We have a lot to be proud of.  With the loss of redevelopment money, the city is undergoing tremendous change.  The last three years of my life has also seen a dramatic change.  My dedication to the community remains as strong as it ever was.  I collect retirement money, and I work part time for a group of smaller Emeryville Property owners who discovered the importance of not paying attention to City Hall.  I came to their rescue in Dec 2011, to help them defeat an unfairly created assessment district.  Trying to do what's right is not always easy.  In an effort to make the community and the region more aware of the meetings I became a videographer.  I work full time full time posting and recording videos of Emeryville and regional public meetings for the public benefit.  The meetings are on youtube.  The result of this work has improved my awareness of the issues, both locally and regionally.  I feel more qualified to serve than ever before.  My work has also created the opportunity for the Emery Go Round to receive a portion of our sales tax money, to help insure continued service.  With the new Emeryville Center of Community Life we have a unique opportunity to bring the city together for common benefit.  I am a strong advocate I am a positive thinking and hard working individual who will always care about our community.  Please allow my experience to work for you on the city council.


  1. What a bag of hot air this guy is. Why don't you remind everybody about his plethora of scandals? He dragged Emeryville through the mud for the whole Bay Area to see.

  2. And the entire country when an article appeared in the N.Y. Times about Mr. Bukowski's problems.

    Let's see: Mr. Bukowski says the last three years of his life have brought a dramatic change. He does not mention vehicular manslaughter and the City paying $3 million to the victim's family. He does not mention his residence in San Francisco. He does not mention his preoccupation with illegal drugs which help him to "think more creatively." When he lost in the last Council election, he told us he was broke. Where does he find an attorney who will represent him? The property he owned on Doyle Street was so littered with junk (he would not clean it up after repeated warnings from the City) that the good people of Emeryville paid for the clean up.

    As long as I have lived in Emeryville, Mr. Bukowski has blamed everyone and everything else for the woes that have befallen him. It's time for him to grow up.

  3. This letter is pathetic. Mr. Bukowski sounds like a whiny college student who failed to plan appropriately and do his work in a timely fashion; then blames the technology and everyone but himself when he misses a due date. Completely incapable of taking accountability for his own actions and his own choices to procrastinate. He is seriously lacking leadership skills. No thank you. Not someone I want on the City Council.

    Mr. Bukowski, you reminded us all why we should NOT vote for you.

  4. Ken, I know this is your life's blood, but know when to hang it up! Your links have always been with the developers and it is obvious that is where they still are--Francis Collins for example. Remember one of your last farewell actions on the council--to Nady--ignoring the general plan and giving him what he wanted. Why waste Francis' money on running? Leaving your paperwork to the last minute does not show an organized man wanting to do the right thing for residents. It is not about you--it's about Emeryville and the residents, so stop this constant miserable behavior! And, we don't want to pay heavily for your position again--how much have you cost the city over the years?

  5. It would sound less pathetic and more believable if he just said he was walking to City Hall and when reached Rudy's Can't Fail, an off-leash dog jumped up on him, grabbed his statement and ate it, right there in the intersection of Hollis and Park Avenue....

  6. I would disagree. I own a residential property in Emeryville and also own my art studio. I have always found Ken Bukowski to be informative, available, and responsive to Emeryville residents. He is not a newcomer & I appreciate his perspective. He is no-doubt like the rest of us, a flawed human being, but he has always worked hard for Emeryville and cares about its future and its people.

    1. The problem with Ken Bukowski besides all his personal faults (that effect his council job) is that he's working for the developers. That's his record on the council. How quickly we forget. He may answer your calls but he's not listening to you. He's listening to them.

  7. I for one would like to know why the city has conspired to keep Ken from filing on time. How deep does this conspiracy go? To Sacramento, perhaps? The White House?

  8. First of all, if you're serious about running for City Council, you do not wait until the very last minute to file your official paperwork (including your ballot statement). Secondly, the statement that Ken listed here on the Tattler - the one he would have submitted to the City Clerk - is 273 words long, 73 words over the 200-word limit. Therefore it would've been rejected anyway. So far, the Bukowski campaign is living up to expectations - clueless, hollow and always looking to pass the buck.

  9. Brian, What plethora of scandals are you referring to in 2011? I remember Ken being the one to expose the scandals and clean up the corruption that lead to paying millions to past employees and residents that were abused.

    Ken is gay and has admitted using drugs in the past. Having worked around obsessive Ken types I can understand why the people of Emeryville have continually chosen him as their voice for 24 years.

    Those taking personal shots at him are doing so out of fear that he will win again. I know why nobody will put their name to their comments. I bet most of these are from people with something to lose if he wins. Ken would never write an anonymous attack on someone. Finally, trying to use an auto accident against him is as slimy as it gets. It was a car "accident" (NOT a DUI) following a city meeting at night in the rain. I'm sure he has felt horrible ever since.

    The city has paid far more in damages for intentional acts of corruption. You cowards should be ashamed of yourselves.

    Emeryville since 93

    1. Ken's plethora of scandals:

      -He lived in a rent controlled San Francisco apartment for years while he was on our Council, even our mayor.
      -He was in arrears on his business taxes he owed to the City, a multi-year problem.
      -His home was cited by City Hall for being a public health hazard, including a rodent harborage; he did not comply with the order to clean the place up forcing the City to do it on our dime.
      -He was fined for numerous violations of the Fair Political Practices Commission including using campaign funds for personal expenses and he has still not paid off these fines.
      -He borrowed money from developers in town who were conducting business with the City, including those waiting for project approval.

      Note: This is only a partial list of the scandals associated with Councilman Bukowski. I haven't even mentioned the scandalous decisions benefitting developers he made at the expense of the residents from the dais that had no findings of fact or rational basis. Those 'soft' scandals are legion.