Residence city/town: Vancouver, WA
Birthplace: Vancouver, WA
Occupation: Office Services Manager (Clark Public Utilities)
Work experience: Clark Public Utilities: Office Services Manager, Appliance Repair Manager, Field Services Manager, Customer Service Representative, Field Service Representative. Vancouver City Council Member
Political history: 2009 Primary Election for City Council Position #1, finished third
Community involvement: Board Chair: Police Officer Pension Board, Firefighter Pension Board. Board Member: Children’s Justice Center, Clark County Mural Society. Participant: Vulnerable Adult Task Force. Youth Sports Coach: Football, Baseball, T-ball, Basketball. Church Activities: Parrish Council, Stewardship Committee
Education/degrees: Associate of Arts, Clark Community College, 1996. Bachelor of Arts, Political Science, Washington State University, 1998. Masters of Business Administration, Marylhurst University, Est. 2013
Marital status: Married(11 years)
Family: Carly(wife), Louis(11), Caroline(6)
Major endorsements: Vancouver Firefighters Union, Save Fire Station 6, Bruce Hagensen, David Horowitz, Ed Lynch, Pat Jollota, Royce Pollard, Ron Hart, Steve Horenstein, Timothy Leavitt, Greg Flakus, Nikki White, Dean Sutherland
Personal fact: I enjoy spending time with my wife and children. This time usually involves coaching youth sports. I am also an avid runner and just participated in the Hood to Coast with my wife Carly.
Quote from candidate: I am the only young, family man on Council and know it's not easy to work and support a family in this economy. I believe we need to be one community, safe and prosperous.
Last book read: General Marshall’s Victory Report on the Winning of World War II in Europe and the Pacific. By George C. Marshall
Campaign Web site: www.retainbarthansen.com
Campaign phone: (360)921-5592
Campaign e-mail:[hidden email]
Why do you want to serve on the Vancouver City Council?
Bart Hansen: I love this city. It is a great place to live, work and raise my family. While my family and I appreciate the opportunities Vancouver has to offer, I also believe the best for Vancouver is in its future. However, this can only be achieved if our leaders make decisions that manage our growth and improve the quality of life for Vancouver’s residents. Being on the City Council allows me to make this vision of the future for Vancouver happen.
What are your top priorities for the city? Please be specific.
* Balancing the budget while ensuring public safety is maintained
* Attracting new business and good paying jobs
* Continuing to maintain and expand our transportation system
* Continuing to maintain and improve our public utilities infrastructure
Clark County's unemployment, at 13.9 percent, remains high compared to the rest of Washington. What would you do to create and attract jobs?
Bart Hansen: Cities do not directly create jobs. Cities can, however, make practical investments in public safety, roads and public utility infrastructure that attract business investment. In turn, this creates jobs. An example of this is the 192nd Avenue corridor on the east side of Vancouver. This transportation project, along with a thoughtfully conceived land use plan, has now resulted in several private and public sector construction projects that have created both construction as well as long term employment opportunities for the citizens of Vancouver. We need to use this example as a guide in developing other areas of our great city.
Considering the city's forecast deficit, where would you seek to make cuts or increase revenue? What cuts or measures would you oppose?
Bart Hansen: Like all cities, the budget must be balanced. The challenge is to carefully allocate revenues to the services our citizens expect. I believe core services cannot fall below existing levels and particularly, Police, Fire and Emergency Services. Our citizens’ safety is the first priority. Transportation, water and sewer services are likewise fundamental expectations of our residents. The household budgets of our citizens are just as stressed as the City’s budget, so there is no fair or practical opportunity for the City to raise revenues through traditional sources such as increasing utility fees, for example. However, certain City activities can be more efficient, and therefore less costly, if consolidated into regional authorities with the county and other cities in Clark County. This could include parks, transportation and fire protection. Obviously, re-alignment or consolidation of these services into regional authorities would require voter approval.
How should the City Council include public input into its decision making? Is there enough now?
Bart Hansen: Allowing ample opportunity for citizen input is a vital part of our democracy. At our City Council meetings, “Citizen’s Communications” has been a long established tradition. In the past, these opportunities had been scheduled every other meeting and recently have been increased to every City Council meeting. In addition, we now hold public forums throughout the city four times a year. I make myself available by telephone, email, or other means to gather citizen input, and frequently attend neighborhood association meetings and other public events. I believe it is crucial to give citizens their opportunity to be heard and know that the City Council is listing to their concerns.