Thugs and Public Servants: What’s the score now that the campaigning is done?
Posted by Brenda McCune on November 5, 2012
While I am thoroughly appalled at the more than $60,000.00 that the Association of Orange County Deputy Sheriff’s (AOCDS) spent in support of incumbent council members in Yorba Linda, it is one of those important distinctions between their message set forth on behalf of the ‘members’ they purport to represent and the members themselves.
In April, A five year, $9 million per year contract was awarded to the Orange County Sheriff. The vote, which took place at 3 am, was literally determined by Nancy Rikel, Mark Schwing, and John Anderson. Even though we have FIVE council members, the other two (Who voted to keep the 40 year contract with Brea Police) don’t matter. The Majority 3 vote together on very issue, every time. They decided this issue, they approved this contract. Little to no public input was elicited or allowed.
These alleged fiscal conservatives, Rikel and Schwing are up for re-election, and have garnered the coveted endorsements of the local GOP and the higher up state and federal representatives.
Regardless of party philosophies and the surreptitious manner in which these endorsements were obtained, the timing of these events should raise more than red flags.
This is also well beyond whether you think the Sheriff will be better that Brea PD or Brea PD will be better that the Sheriff. Seven months later. More than $60k in support, from the Union that benefitted, to the politicians who fully controlled and ultimately decided their contract.
Did I mention there is an Ethics Ordinance in Yorba Linda that prohibits any council member from accepting contributions in excess of $250 from any person or entity that may contract with the city? These mailers were sent directly from the address of, and paid for by the Union. These politicians will stand behind their “My campaign did not pay for that”. Later we will have a debate about what “sex with that woman” means also. Sometimes things are exactly what they seem to be. Do we really need that “blue dress”of physical evidence to show us what this relationship is about?
I work with Sheriff deputies every day. I thank God each day that they are there at the courthouse, keeping me and my clients safe, and maintaining order in a tense and sometimes chaotic environment. These fine men and women serve and carry guns and badges on a daily basis to protect their community, and not necessarily because they desire to be the deciding factors in the election process.
In 2009, shortly after the Triangle Complex Fire, I had the privilege of attending the Annual Chamber of Commerce Police and Fire breakfast. I sat with 9 officers, all who for various reasons were being honored for their extraordinary service. I heard of incredible acts of courage and sacrifice during the extraordinary day that over 100 homes in Yorba Linda burned to the ground. The effective work and brave actions of the police an fire crews that protected Yorba Linda on that day were clearly responsible for the fact that there was no loss of life.
These public servants face incredible danger so that we don’t have to. They are also citizens, are entitled to associate, to vote, to form opinions and voice them. However, the magnitude of this Sheriff contract, the sweeping change of terminating a 42 year relationship with Brea PD in a 3 am vote, coupled with unprecedented dollars in campaign support, only seven months later, is all something that goes well beyond entitlement of the union to participation in the election process. If this is not pay to play, I can not imagine what is.