Stone Wall at Vancouver City Hall

An update from Larry Patella on his efforts to give citizens the ability to vote on light rail.

“Yesterday, Charlie Stemper and yours truly accompanied Frank Arnold, a friend and Vancouver Resident as he attempted to serve Legal Documents to Vancouver City Attorney Ted Gathe and Vancouver City Clerk Lloyd Tyler, defendants in our Lawsuit that will give the citizens of Vancouver, Washington the opportunity to vote on whether or not they want Portland’s Financially Failing Light Rail System to Cross the Columbia River.

Upon entering at approximately 10:00 am the former Fish Wrapper building, now known as Vancouver City Hall, we went to the Security Guards Desk and asked where we could find the City Attorney and the City Clerk. We were then asked the nature of our business. We advised the Security Guard that we had just filed a Law Suit against the City of Vancouver and Mr. Arnold was there to serve copies of the Law Suit to the City Attorney and the City Clerk. We were told that Mr. Arnold could not serve the City Attorney. Next she, the Security Guard, advised us that she was unaware that there was such a thing as a City Clerk. Mr Stemper next went over to the Customer Service Desk to see if they could contact the City Clerk. He was advised by the lady at the Customer Service Desk that she did not know who the City Clerk was.
After some heated discussion with the Security Guard, I asked if I could go to the second floor and talk to the City Attorney or the City Manager. I was advised that citizens were not allowed on the Second Floor. After more heated discussion a young lady appeared on the scene. She advised us that Mr. Arnold would not be allowed to serve the City Attorney, but we could leave the documents. When we asked who she was she refused to tell us her name. Fortunately she had a name tag that said “Tammy”. It was at this point that I stepped in and advised the lady known only as Tammy, that we would not under any circumstances leave the documents to be served without a Date/Time Received Stamp on our copies. Tammy Refused.


Frustrated, I advised Tammy that if Mr. Arnold was not allowed to serve the City Attorney, our next stop would be the Columbian (the Fish Wrapper). Because my request to talk to the City Attorney, the City Clerk or the City Manager had repeatedly been refused by the Security Guard, I, using my cell phone called 411, ask the operator to connect me with the Vancouver City Clerk’s Office. Kerry Llewellyn, Assistant City Clerk answered the phone, I told her who I was and she immediately came to the Security Desk, Date/Time Stamped and took the document served by Mr. Arnold for the City Clerk. Kerry was a very pleasant, professional young lady.

Next the lady known only as Tammy, did at 10:53 AM Date/Time Stamp the documents Mr. Arnold served for the City Attorney and the remaining copies stating that she was not officially receiving the City Attorney’s copies. We later found out that the Lady Known as Tammy was the City of Vancouver’s legal department Senior Administrative Assistant.

We left the heavily guarded City Hall shocked beyond disbelief that law abiding citizens do not have access to those that are paid with our hard earned tax dollars to serve us. That we are not allowed in the building we paid some 40 or 50 million dollars for.


 It is the opinion of Charlie Stemper, Frank Arnold and yours truly that there was a deliberate attempt on the Part of ‘someone’ in City Hall to deny Mr. Arnold his constitutional right to serve legal document to the City of Vancouver.

Folks this shocking treatment, of law abiding citizens attempting to communicate with those who are paid with our hard earned tax dollars should upset you as much as it did Mr. Arnold, Mr. Stemper and yours truly. Government is getting out of hand. Or as my daddy would say “they are getting too big for their britches”. That is the bad news.

The good news is our law suit aimed at forcing Mayor “I was against bridge tolls before I was for them” Leavitt and his gang of 4 (Sm

ith, Burkman, Harris and Hansen) to place your Stop Light Rail Certified Petition on the Ballot is filed. However our work is not yet done. We still need your help. Your donations

As evidenced by what we experience yesterday, and the unprofessional Actions of the Vancouver City Council’s behavior at Tuesday’s C-Tran’s Board Meeting, the dictatorial behavior of our local Government (City Council) continues to grow. It has to stop. It needs to stop. A good place to start is to get your Stop Light Rail Petition on the Ballot. We still need you to donate whatever you can afford to help us fund the court actions necessary to have our voices not only heard, but recognized.

Fortunately for us the non-profit tax exempt “Citizen in Charge Foundation located at 2050 Old Bridge Road, Suite 103-B, Lake Ridge, VA 22192, and Phone: (571) 327-0441, Fax: (703) 910-7728 has also agreed to help us.

Here is how the Foundation will help. They have hired our attorney Stephen Pidgeon to proceed with the second round of litigation. It will challenge the constitutionality of Vancouver’s city charter, which the city claims prevents it from placing the initiative on the ballot. Part of that Charter has already be ruled Unconstitutional.

Donations for Mr. Pidgeon’s services can be made to “Citizens in Charge Foundation”. Such donations are TAX DEDUCTIBLE. In addition, the foundation will protect the anonymity of donors so any person, business, or organization that donates to this effort does not need to be concerned about government or private retaliation for their support. The Foundation has set up a separate account so contributions must be made payable to:

‘Citizens in Charge Foundation – Vancouver’

Please Mail TODAY, your most Generous Donation (check) to:

Citizens in Charge Foundation -Vancouver
C/O Larry Patella,
P. O. Box 5797
Vancouver, WA 98668.

Thank you,”

Larry Patella
CDR USN (ret)


1 comment for “Stone Wall at Vancouver City Hall

  1. Chuck Miller
    May 24, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    Why is it so difficult to get the City of Vancouver to honor the law and give our Citizens a vote on the CRC and Light Rail?

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