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Valley Perspective

Valley VOTE

March 12, 2000

Re "Treasurer Secedes From Valley VOTE, Citing 'Malfeasance,' " March 2.

In all my experiences with Valley VOTE and as the current treasurer of the organization for almost a full year, I have seen nothing to suggest there is any malfeasance going on in the Valley VOTE organization.

Last year [former Treasurer Bruce] Bialosky advanced some money to Valley VOTE and was not paid back as quickly as he should have been. This was unfortunate, but does not constitute malfeasance. This, however, resulted in a small personality dispute that is a product of the tiny growing pains the Valley independence movement has faced as more and more supporters have flocked to the cause.

Every large-scale movement, whether it was the civil rights movement in the 1960s or even the original American struggle for independence, has seen its share of competing personalities and hurt feelings.

What is important is the thousands of citizens from all over the Valley who are coming together to support independence. They want better schools, safer streets, cleaner neighborhoods, and a chance to have a say in their city's future. They don't care about "he said, she said" internal disputes. They resent a great newspaper like The Times stooping to the level of sandbox personality politics.

After all, Bialosky hasn't been treasurer of Valley VOTE for nearly a year. Back in July 1999, I was duly nominated to be treasurer by the nominating committee and approved by the board at the same time as all the other officers were approved at a general board meeting open to the public.

Instead of [the newspaper's] trumpeting charges from out of left field, it would do Los Angeles a world of good for The Times to join Valley VOTE in hitting one out of the park for Valley residents: Support the LAFCO Study.

RICKEY GELB

Valley VOTE

Encino

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