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Archive for the ‘Orange County Board of Supervisors’ Category

Lisa Bartlett Attacks Robert Ming With False “Facts”

Posted by Greg Woodard on June 30, 2014

Apparently concerned by Robert Ming’s first place finish in the primary for the Orange County Supervisor race in the Fifth District, Lisa Bartlett has started sending around something titled “Ming’s Dings.”  The first installment calls out Ming for his support last year of a city loan to the new City Manager for him to buy a house in the city.  Unfortunately, Bartlett appears more concerned about casting Ming in a negative light than she does about the actual facts surrounding the loan.  (For the record, I supported Ming in the primary.)

Bartlett falsely claims that the median home price in Laguna Niguel is $300,000 and contrasts that with the $925,000 loan that the City Manager was requesting.  In fact, the median home price in Laguna Niguel is actually much higher at anywhere from $650,000 to over $675,000.  Bartlett also falsely states that the loan was approved at a below-market interest rate, yet the story cited in Bartlett’s own hit piece states that the City Council (Ming included) voted to require that the interest on the loan be at market rate.  In addition, the City Manager’s loan payments are taken directly from his paycheck and if he ever leaves the city or is terminated, he must sell his house and pay off the loan.  Finally, the hit piece erroneously inflates the City Manager’s salary and benefits by over $215,000.  In fact, the City Manager’s salary and benefits are slightly lower than the average of Orange County city managers, and actually lower than the City Manager in Bartlett’s city, Dana Point (despite Laguna Niguel having almost 30,000 more residents).  It is ironic that Bartlett, a partner at a real estate and investment firm, would not know the median home price in Laguna Niguel.  Even more ironic is the fact that Bartlett would be calling out (falsely) the Laguna Niguel City Manager’s salary and benefits, when her own City Manager’s package is higher.

People can debate the wisdom of a city offering a loan to a City Manager (other cities offer a similar perk).  However, the debate should begin with the real facts, not those embellished by a political foe who is trying to make up ground in advance of the November election.  I trust Bartlett will be issuing a correction any time now.

Posted in 5th Supervisorial District, Dana Point, Laguna Niguel, Orange County Board of Supervisors | Tagged: , , | 5 Comments »

June 2014 Organizational Endorsements Scorecard

Posted by Chris Emami on June 5, 2014

Chris Nguyen posted a humongous grid of endorsements that broke down all the major organizations and what candidates they endorsed for non-partisan offices in Orange County. You can take a look at his humongous grid of endorsements here. As a follow-up I have done the math on how the endorsed candidates fared in the Tuesday election and have given credit to an organization for endorsing a candidate that either won outright or advanced to the November election.

report_card

Here is a guide to the abbreviations: OC GOP = Republican Party of Orange County, DPOC = Democratic Party of Orange County, CRA = California Republican Assembly, HJTA = Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, CWLA = California Women’s Leadership Association, OC Tax = Orange County Taxpayers Association, OCBC = Orange County Business Council, and CTA = California Teachers Association.

OC GOP DPOC OC Register Lincoln Club Atlas PAC CRA Family Action PAC HJTA CWLA OC Tax OCBC CTA OC Labor Federation Evolve Women in Leadership Planned Parenthood
%  83% 14% 76%  75% 80% 83% 83% 100% 100% 92% 50% 50% 43% 0%  50% 33%
# of Winners  10  1  13  9  8  10 5  5  7  11  2  1  3  0  1  1
# of Losers  2 6  4  3  2  2  1  0  0  1  2  1 4 2  1 2

 

Anybody that got 75% and higher can be considered an organization with a valuable endorsement but the big winners from this election cycle were the California Women’s Leadership Association (Orange County Chapter) and the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association both of which managed to endorse no losers.

 

Posted in 2nd Supervisorial District, 4th Supervisorial District, 5th Supervisorial District, Anaheim, Buena Park School District, Democrat Central Committee, Irvine Unified School District, Orange County, Orange County Assessor, Orange County Auditor-Controller, Orange County Board of Education, Orange County Clerk-Recorder, Orange County Public Administrator, Orange County Treasurer-Tax Collector, Republican Central Committee | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Post Script on the Election and the CRA Slate Mailer Newspaper

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on June 4, 2014

Chris Emami reported on the CRA Slate Mailer Newspaper a few days ago (CRA) which CRA Vice President Dale Tyler and I put together with some able help from former CRA Treasurer John Fugatt.  Obviously I believe it is the best of the slate mailers newspaper (it is open only to CRA endorsed candidates).

Assuming there are no upsets with the provisional ballot count, 100% of the candidates who placed articles / ads in the mailer either won their races or advanced to the run off in November.  Congratulations to Diane Harkery, Eric Woolery, Linda Lindholm, Robert Ming, Bill Brough, Jeff Ferguson and Tony Rackauckas for your win and thank you for believing in our mailer!

Posted in 5th Supervisorial District, 73rd Assembly District, Board of Equalization, Dana Point, Laguna Niguel, Orange County, Orange County Auditor-Controller, Orange County Board of Education, Orange County Board of Supervisors, Orange County District Attorney's Office, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

OC’s Top 10 Primary Election Stories

Posted by Chris Nguyen on June 4, 2014

Eric Woolery, Robert Hammond, Linda Lindholm, and Ken Williams

OC Board of Education Group Photo at the Custom Campaigns June 3 Election Night Party at BJ’s in Irvine:
Auditor-Controller-Elect/Orange City Treasurer/Former OCBE Trustee Eric Woolery, OCBE Trustee Robert Hammond, Laguna Niguel Mayor/OCBE Trustee-Elect Linda Lindholm, and OCBE Trustee Ken Williams.

Woolery achieved a historic margin of victory in his race for Auditor-Controller (story #6) while Lindholm knocked off Orange County’s longest-serving-in-a-single-office incumbent (story #5). 

As expected, it was a busy night in yesterday’s primary election.  Here’s a rundown of the top 10 stories:

  1. AD-74: Keith Curry and Matt Harper Advance, Emanuel Patrascu LastEmami called it, mostly.  Thanks to Karina Onofre spoiling the Democratic vote for Anila Ali, we have an all-Republican battle for AD-74 to replace Assemblyman Allan Mansoor.  Shockingly, Emanuel Patrascu who had the second most money in AD-74 came in fifth while Harper who spent next to nothing (and what he did spend focused on slate mailers) came in a comfortable second.  This comes down to a Newport vs. Huntington battle in the November runoff, as Newport Beach Councilman Curry fights it out with Huntington Beach Mayor Harper for the Assembly seat.  How much in Republican resources will be drained by the AD-74 race in November, as Republicans seek to capture SD-34 and AD-65 from the Democrats?
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  2. AD-73: Bill Brough Wins GOP Nomination, Anna Bryson Last – In this safe Republican seat, Bill Brough’s low-budget operation demonstrated that precinct walking does work for winning open seats.  With Democrat Wendy Gabriella advancing to the runoff with Brough, he is the prohibitive favorite to be the next Assemblymember from the 73rd District and the district’s first Assemblyman in 16 years after Assemblywomen Patricia Bates, Mimi Walters, and Diane Harkey.  Depending on completion of vote counts for absentees and provisionals, Anna Bryson’s IE-laden campaign may have cost well over $100 per vote.  (To put the massive IE spending for Bryson in perspective, here’s how much spending would have been needed for several other candidates in other races to match that rate: Michelle Steel would have needed $2.4 million, Linda Lindholm $3.1 million, and Eric Woolery $11.0 million.)  This race clearly demonstrated: money can’t buy everything.
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  3. AD-55: Ling-Ling Chang Captures Top Spot – In a brutal slugfest between Diamond Bar Councilwoman Ling-Ling Chang and Walnut Valley Unified School District Trustee Phillip Chen with Diamond Bar Councilman Steve Tye threatening to play spoiler, well-funded Chang managed to overcome very-well-funded Chen’s financial advantage to capture the top spot with 28% of the vote, pushing Chen into third place with 23% of the vote and Tye with 22% of the vote.  Democrat Gregg Fritchle came in second with 28% of the vote.  In this safe Republican district, Chang is the prohibitive favorite to be the next Assemblymember from the 55th District, replacing Curt Hagman.
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  4. SD-34: Janet Nguyen Captures Majority of Votes Cast; Republicans Take Almost 2/3 of Votes Cast – It was a foregone conclusion that Orange County Supervisor Janet Nguyen would be the Republican nominee against the Democrats’ nominee, former Assemblyman Jose Solorio, in the hotly-contested SD-34.  What is shocking is that despite the presence of Republican former Orange County Board of Education Trustee Long Pham on the ballot, Nguyen still managed to capture 52% of the vote to Solorio’s 34% in the two-county SD-34 race.  Pham captured 14%.  With Republicans capturing nearly 2/3 of the vote, and Nguyen herself capturing 52%, this builds significant momentum for Nguyen heading into the November race, with Republicans turning to Nguyen to break the Democrats’ supermajority in the State Senate and Democrats turning to Solorio to preserve the Democrats’ Senate supermajority.  (For the record, I am not related to Janet Nguyen. The last name Nguyen is held by 36% of Vietnamese people.)
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  5. Orange County Board of Education: Linda Lindholm Unseats 32-Year Incumbent Giant Slayer Liz Parker – For the last few years, there was a joke in education circles that the way to win an Assembly seat was to lose an Orange County Board of Education race to Liz Parker.  Chuck DeVore lost to Parker in 1990 and won an Assembly seat in 2004. Don Wagner lost to Parker in 1998 and won an Assembly seat in 2010.  However, Parker is done.  After nearly a 1/3 of a century in office, Liz Parker has been unseated by Laguna Niguel Mayor Linda Lindholm.  No elected official in Orange County has held the same office longer than Liz Parker.  (Indeed, Parker graduated from college the same month she was elected to the Orange County Board of Education.)
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  6. Auditor-Controller: Eric Woolery’s Unprecedented Majority – In a five-way race with no incumbent for Auditor-Controller, Orange City Treasurer Eric Woolery won nearly 57% of the vote, nearly 40% better than the second-place candidate, Deputy Auditor-Controller Frank Davies, who won 17% of the vote.  In a race with three or more candidates with no incumbent, there has not been a candidate who has won by such a large margin in at least 30 years and, quite possibly, ever.  Indeed, there was only one candidate in those incumbent-free, 3+ candidate races who even averted a runoff: David Sundstrom, who received 50.3% of the vote for Auditor-Controller in 1998. (Anaheim Mayor Tom Daly won 41% of the vote in a five-way race for Clerk-Recorder in 2002 before winning the runoff.  Assistant Public Administrator Vicki Landrus won 41% of the vote and College Trustee John Williams won 36% of the vote in a four-way race for Public Administrator in 2002; Williams won the runoff.  OC Internal Auditor David Sundstrom won 50.3% of the vote in a three-way race for Auditor-Controller in 1998.  OC Assistant Assessor Webster Guillory won 26% of the vote in a seven-way race for Assessor in 1998 before winning the runoff.)
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  7. Irvine Unified School District: Ira Glasky Renders Special Election Moot, Beats Agran-Backed Candidate – After IUSD Trustee Gavin Huntley-Fenner resigned due to business and family obligations, the IUSD Board appointed Ira Glasky to fill the seat in November 2013.  Utilizing an obscure section of the Education Code, a petition drive gathered the necessary 1,643 signatures (1.5% of registered voters at the 2012 school board election) to invalidate Glasky’s appointment and force a special election.  The special election cost IUSD schools hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars.  Three candidates filed to run: Glasky, Larry Agran-backed Carolyn Inmon, and Bob Vu.  Glasky won 42% of the vote to Inmon’s 37% and Vu’s 22%.  IUSD was forced to spend hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars on a special election that had the same end result as if the special election had never happened.
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  8. Assessor: Webster Guillory vs. Claude Parrish Runoff – In 2010, Webster Guillory won 53% of the vote to Claude Parrish’s 47%, but Parrish ran as “Businessman/Tax Consultant” in 2010.  Parrish is “Taxpayer Advocate/Businessman” this year.  Last night, Guillory won 47% to Parrish’s 43%, with Jorge Lopez getting 10%.  Parrish’s stronger ballot designation narrowed the margin between Guillory and Parrish.  In Guillory’s favor is the fact that November voters are more favorable to incumbents than June voters.  In Parrish’s favor is the fact that he has a stronger ballot designation in 2014 than he did in 2010.  Also in Parrish’s favor is the investigation around whether or not Guillory’s nomination papers were signed by his subordinates at the office on County time; if this garners more publicity it helps Parrish; if it fizzles, it’s moot.
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  9. Supe-5: Robert Ming vs. Lisa Bartlett RunoffThe narrative in this race always had business interests spending on IEs for Mission Viejo Councilman Frank Ury to put him into the runoff for the Fifth District Supervisor’s race.  The conventional wisdom was wrong, as Laguna Niguel Councilman Robert Ming and Dana Point Mayor Lisa Bartlett each achieved 29% of the vote (Ming ahead of Bartlett by 0.4%), with Ury in third at 24% and Deputy District Attorney Joe Williams last at 18%.
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  10. Supe-2: Steel Beats Mansoor 2-1 as Both Make Runoff – Conventional wisdom held that the Second District Supervisor’s race would result in a runoff between Board of Equalization Member Michelle Steel and Assemblyman Allan Mansoor.  What wasn’t expected was just how close to 50% Steel would get or how large her margin over Mansoor would be.  Surpassing most expectations, Steel pulled off 47% of the vote to Mansoor’s 24%, with Coast Community College District Trustee Jim Moreno at 22% and Huntington Beach Councilman Joe Carchio at 8%.

These honorable mentions were things that happened as expected but may have interesting footnotes:

Honorable Mention #1 – CD-45: Raths Falls Short, Jockeying Begins for SD-37 and Even AD-68 – Republican Retired Marine Colonel Greg Raths fell 4% short of overtaking Democrat Educator/Businessman Drew Leavens to advance to the general election with Republican Senator Mimi Walters.  Did Walters’s hit piece (calling Raths a “Bill Clinton Republican” for his assignment to the Clinton White House while serving in the Marine Corps) move the needle 4%?  Jockeying for the special election for Walters’s SD-37 seat and even Assemblyman Don Wagner’s AD-68 seat has already begun since Walters is expected to crush Leavens in CD-45 in November.

Honorable Mention #2 – Shawn Nelson: OC’s Biggest Supervisorial Landslide Ever? With 84% of the vote, Supervisor Shawn Nelson’s reelection bid may well be the most lopsided victory ever achieved by an Orange County supervisor (excluding races where a Supervisor was unopposed or a Supervisor’s only opponent was a write-in candidate).

Honorable Mention #3 – Measure A: OC’s Biggest Landslide Ever? – With 88% of voters in casting ballots in favor of Measure A, the measure may well have achieved the highest percentage ever for a ballot measure in Orange County.

In the interest of full disclosure, clients of Custom Campaigns (the consulting firm that owns OC Political) include four IUSD Trustees (story #7: Ira Glasky, Paul Bokota, Lauren Brooks, and Michael Parham), three OCBE Trustees (story #5: Linda Lindholm, Robert Hammond, and Ken Williams), Eric Woolery (story #6), and Robert Ming (story #9).  Separate and apart from the consulting firm that owns OC Political, this blogger also did the staff work for Measure A (honorable mention #3).

Posted in 2nd Supervisorial District, 34th Senate District, 55th Assembly District, 5th Supervisorial District, 73rd Assembly District, 74th Assembly District, Orange County Auditor-Controller, Orange County Board of Education | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

OC Register Endorsements: Including Brand New Endorsement From Weekend

Posted by Chris Emami on June 2, 2014

The OC Register endorsed in a majority of races on the ballot including a new endorsement that was released this morning for Marshall Tuck a candidate for State Superintendent of Public Instruction. Here is a list of endorsed candidates:

State Superintendent of Public Instruction- Marshall Tuck
O.C. Supervisor, District 2- Michelle Steel
O.C. Supervisor, District 4- Shawn Nelson
O.C. Supervisor, District 5- Robert Ming & Frank Ury (You can only vote for 1)
O.C. Assessor- Claude Parrish
O.C. Clerk-Recorder- Hugh Nguyen
O.C. District Attorney- Tony Rackauckas
Superior Court Judge, Office 20- Helen Hayden
Superior Court Judge, Office 27- Joanne Motoike
Superior Court Judge, Office 35- Carmen Luege
O.C. Board of Education, Trustee Area 2- Tom Pollitt
O.C. Board of Education, Trustee Area 5- Linda Lindholm
Irvine Unified School District Board- Ira Glasky 
O.C. Measure A- Yes
Buena Park Measure B- No
Anaheim Measure C- Yes
Anaheim Measure D- No
Anaheim Measure E- Yes
Prop. 41- No
Prop. 42- Yes

To see more details about each of the endorsements click on this link to go to the OC Register website by clicking here. I agree with a majority of the endorsements that they made with a few small differences. It will be interesting to see how each of these candidates fares on Tuesday night.

Posted in 2nd Supervisorial District, 4th Supervisorial District, 5th Supervisorial District, Anaheim, Buena Park School District, California, Irvine Unified School District, Orange County, Orange County Assessor, Orange County Board of Education, Orange County Board of Supervisors, Orange County Clerk-Recorder, Orange County District Attorney's Office | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Mansoor Finally in the Mail – Attacks Steel’s AOCDS Support

Posted by Marion Morrison on June 1, 2014

The Morrison household finally received Allan Mansoor’s first campaign mailer this weekend.  It was a comparison hit piece that tries to paint Michelle Steel as a Union lackey and career politician.  Additionally, our family received a follow-up letter to the one that was previously sent when absentee ballots dropped.  The language has changed a bit, so I included it here.  With a fair amount of absentees yet to be returned, and Election Day on Tuesday, this piece may just save him from being defeated in the Primary.  Only time will tell.

Mansoor Hit 2 of 2 Mansoor Hit 1 of 2

Mansoor Letter 1 of 2Mansoor Letter 2 of 2

 

 

Posted in 2nd Supervisorial District, Mail | Tagged: , , | 4 Comments »

Giant Grid of Endorsements for the June 3 Primary Election

Posted by Chris Nguyen on May 30, 2014

One of our most popular posts from the November 2012 General Election was “Humongous Grid of Endorsements,” so we’re back this election with the Giant Grid of Endorsements for the June 2014 Primary Election.

I did abbreviate for some groups, so OC GOP = Republican Party of Orange County, DPOC = Democratic Party of Orange County, CRA = California Republican Assembly, HJTA = Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, CWLA = California Women’s Leadership Association, OC Tax = Orange County Taxpayers Association, OCBC = Orange County Business Council, and CTA = California Teachers Association.

If you’re particularly interested in a group, click their name to view their endorsements on their web site.  You can learn more about the group there, such as HJTA being the state’s leading taxpayer advocate group or Women in Leadership being a single-issue group with the sole goal of electing “pro-choice women candidates to local, regional and state-wide office who support keeping abortion legal.” (In light of their mission, does anyone else find it odd that Women in Leadership’s two endorsements on this grid are both for school board?)

Candidates in each race are listed in alphabetical order by last name, except incumbents got listed first in their respective races.  Party affiliations are listed except for judicial candidates Thomas Martin and Wayne Philips, as I could not tell their affiliation from the voter database (common names combined with obscure judicial races make figuring out their affiliations challenging).

Whether you love a group and want to vote with their endorsements or hate a group and want to vote against their endorsements, here are the endorsements for county offices and school board, along with local ballot measures:

OC GOP DPOC OC Register Lincoln Club Atlas PAC CRA Family Action PAC HJTA CWLA OC Tax OCBC CTA OC Labor Federation Evolve Women in Leadership Planned Parenthood
Supervisor, 2nd District
Joe Carchio (R)
Allan Mansoor (R) X
Jim Moreno (D) X X X X
Michelle Steel (R) X X X X X X
Supervisor, 4th District
Shawn Nelson (R – incumbent) X X X X X
Rudy Gaona (D) X X
Supervisor, 5th District
Lisa Bartlett (R)
Robert Ming (R) X X X X X X
Frank Ury (R) X X X
Joe Williams (NPP)
Assessor
Webster Guillory (NPP – incumbent) X
Jorge Lopez (D) X X
Claude Parrish (R) X X X X X
Auditor-Controller
James Benuzzi (D)
Mike Dalati (D) X
Frank Davies (R)
John Willard (NPP) X
Eric Woolery (R) X X X X
Clerk-Recorder
Hugh Nguyen (R – incumbent) X X X X X X
Monica Maddox (R)
Gary Pritchard (D) X X
Steve Rocco (NPP)
District Attorney-Public Administrator
Tony Rackauckas (R – incumbent) X X X X X
Greg Diamond (D) X
Sheriff-Coroner
Sandra Hutchens (R – incumbent) X X X X
Superintendent of Schools
Al Mijares (R – incumbent) X X
Treasurer-Tax Collector
Shari Freidenrich (R – incumbent) X X X X X X X
Judge, Office #14
Fred Fascenelli (R)
Kevin Haskins (R) X X X X X
KC Jones (R) X
Thomas Martin
Judge, Office #20
Derek Johnson (D – incumbent)
Helen Hayden (R) X X X X
Judge, Office #27
Joanne Motoike (D – incumbent) X X X
Wayne Philips
Judge, Office #35
Jeff Ferguson (R) X X X
Carmen Luege (R) X X
County Board of Education, Trustee Area 2
David Boyd (R – incumbent) * X X X
Tom Pollitt (R) X X X X X X
County Board of Education, Trustee Area 5
Elizabeth Parker (R – incumbent) * X X X X
Linda Lindholm (R) X X X X X X X
Irvine Unified School District (Special Election for Six-Month Term)
Ira Glasky (R – incumbent) X X  X
Carolyn Inmon (D) X X
Bob Vu (R)
Measure A (Orange County)
Yes X X X X
No
Measure B (Buena Park School District)
Yes
No X
Measure C (Anaheim)
Yes X X
No
Measure D (Anaheim)
Yes
No X
Measure E (Anaheim)
Yes X X
No

*The Democratic Party of Orange County did not endorse David Boyd or Elizabeth Parker, instead the DPOC issued anti-endorsements against Tom Pollitt and Linda Lindholm.

Posted in 2nd Supervisorial District, 4th Supervisorial District, 5th Supervisorial District, Anaheim, Buena Park School District, Democrat Central Committee, Irvine Unified School District, Orange County, Orange County Assessor, Orange County Auditor-Controller, Orange County Board of Education, Orange County Clerk-Recorder, Orange County Public Administrator, Orange County Treasurer-Tax Collector, Republican Central Committee | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Carchio in the Mail for 2nd Supervisorial – Beats Mansoor

Posted by Marion Morrison on May 29, 2014

Interestingly we received a small postcard in the mail today with all 75 pieces of typical campaign literature.  For some reason, this little guy actually stood out amongst the rest.  One would really have to read into it – but to reach a large audience, this late in the game and for a smaller price tag, Joe Carchio actually gets an A for effort.  While I personally don’t think this will help propel Carchio into November, it may steal away enough votes and prevent Michelle Steel from walking away with the clean sweep.  Allan Mansoor still has yet to put out one piece of traditional campaign mail.  Tick tock, tick tock…

Carchio Postcard 2 of 2 Carchio Postcard 1 of 2

Posted in 2nd Supervisorial District, Mail | Tagged: , , | 3 Comments »

2nd Supervisorial – Steel Receives 4th IE Mailer from AOCDS and Hits Mansoor Twice

Posted by Marion Morrison on May 29, 2014

Today’s mail was literally coming out of my ears.  AOCDS has sent out their 4th mailer supporting Michelle Steel.  This is a straight public safety piece which even includes the AOCDS logo.  Also in the mail were two hit pieces on Allan Mansoor, one of which mentions his previous support for pension increases and one talks about the government pension he’ll receive from being a former Sheriff.  Hmmmm…

Steel IE 2 of 2 Steel IE 1 of 2

Steel Hit 2 2 of 2 Steel Hit 2 1 of 2

Steel Hit 2 of 2 Steel Hit 1 of 2

Posted in 2nd Supervisorial District, Mail | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

Why I Am Supporting Robert Ming for Supervisor

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on May 28, 2014


One of the important races on the June 3rd ballot is for the Orange County Supervisor, 5th District which is basically south Orange County.  Of the candidates in that race, I am supporting Laguna Niguel City Councilman Robert Ming (Robert Ming).  In the decade plus that I have known Robert, he has been a consistent movement conservative who judges decisions he makes on the City Council through the prism of questions such as 1. Is this something the Government should even be doing in the first place (instead of private enterprise), 2. is it Constitutional? and 3. is it the best deal for the taxpayers?  Whenever possible and legal Robert Ming (who is an attorney by profession) seeks to have government outsource functions to private contractors rather than have in-house employees hired with the attendant salaries, retirement benefits and retiree health care costs burdening the taxpayers.  He is also not in favor of government choosing winners and losers at the taxpayers’ expense (also known as “crony capitalism” which favors the politician’s friends and supporters).  Robert believes that when the government does business with private enterprise, all parties should play by the same rules and the government should remain neutral with the taxpayers getting the maximum benefit from open and fair competition.

While on the City Council Robert’s city built Laguna Niguel’s City Hall on time, under budget and for cash (no debt, bonds or loans of any kind).  When he was on the Board of the Orange County Vector Control agency, he insisted on transparency by the senior management that revealed wasteful spending by the Agency and the resignation of the former Executive Director.  Robert Ming was one of the main leaders in forming the Association of California Cities Orange County to counter the big government left leaning League of Cities.  He currently is the chairman of the ACCOC’s committee on pension reform.

Several years ago, Robert and I co-founded a public policy ministry at our church to help parishioners understand matters of public policy that are facing them in votes they are being asked to cast at elections.

In all of the decisions and situations (personal and as an elected leader) I have seen Robert in, he has always been consistent and honorable in his decision-making.  He will make an excellent choice to replace Pat Bates (who is termed out) which is why current Supervisors John Moorlach and Board Chairman Shawn Nelson have endorsed Robert Ming.  Robert has also been endorsed by the California Republican Assembly, the Lincoln Club of Orange County, the Family Action PAC and Atlas PAC and many, many local elected officials and South County citizens.  Of all of the South Orange County activists who research candidates and make voter recommendations, all of them recommend Robert Ming to be our next representative on the Board of Supervisors.  My friend Robyn Nordell, who hosts her own voter recommendation web site (www.robynnordell.com) and puts up the lists of most of the other activist lists’, also recommends Robert for this position (see the Orange County section of Robyn’s site).

Running against Robert for this seat are three other candidates.  One is the current Mayor of my town Dana Point.  Lisa Bartlett’s votes and actions on the City of Dana Point City Council and on the Transportation Corridor Agencies have proven that she is not a true conservative or qualified for this position.  While on the City Council she voted to raise taxes on guests at certain Dana Point hotels, ban plastic shopping bags and increase the size of the Dana Point city government (more employees and eliminating most outsourcing to independent contractors).

In addition, recently Ms. Bartlett was stripped of her authority as Chairman of the Transportation Corridor’s Foothill/Eastern Transportation Corridor Agency (Lisa Bartlett Stripped of Authority to Approve Contracts at TCA) largely due to her approving very questionable contracts without notice to her fellow board members.  Part of her duties were to approve or disapprove of certain types of contracts and contract extensions presented to her by the Executive Director of the TCA.  During the March 18, 2014 Dana Point City Council meeting I asked her which of the contracts the Executive Director of the TCA presented did she disapprove.  She responded that she did not disapprove of any of the contracts presented to her.  Further that the total amount involved was only $200,000.00 (Dana Point City Council: Scrutinizing TCA).

Her answers reveal two important shortcomings: First she considers $200,000 to not be an important amount of money – I find this attitude regarding ratepayer / taxpayer funds to be irresponsible.  It also appears she simply rubber stamped what the executive staff placed in front of her which tells me she does not ask the proper or “hard” questions of the staff that report to her as an elected official.  Given that the County’s total budget is several billions of taxpayer dollars – Ms. Bartlett’s votes and actions do not give me confidence she will be a good steward of our county taxpayer funds.

Another candidate for the 5th District Supervisor position is Mission Viejo city councilman Frank Ury.  Some of Mr. Ury’s votes on his city council cause me to have concerns about his motivations and how he would handle responsibility at the county level.  For example in 2008 or 2009 at the start of the Great Recession when Mission Viejo (and other Orange County) families were facing layoffs and cut backs, Frank Ury voted to approve the city spending approximately $350,000 in Mission Viejo taxpayer funds to buy a parade float in the Rose Bowl Parade.  There are many cities and other public entities that have Rose Bowl floats but they are normally financed by private donations not taxpayer dollars.  Some like to defend this vote by claiming there were hundreds or thousands of volunteers who came out to work on the float.  Even if that is a true statement (which is questionable), then the City Council could have asked each of these “thousands” of excited and motivated volunteers to help finance this project with $25 and $100 contributions (which could be set up to be tax-deductible) and pay for the float with volunteer funds with the City simply being a conduit for that civic effort.  Instead Mr. Ury voted to use taxpayer dollars to fund this unnecessary expenditure while the economy was shrinking rapidly.

Another of his questionable votes was for life time health care benefits for city council members who serve three terms on the council.  This would be a significant cost to Mission Viejo taxpayers for the health care of prior city council persons long, long after they have left office.  For a politician who claims to be a fiscal conservative to cast such a self-serving vote strongly suggests he was placing his own interests above those of the citizens he was elected to represent.

I am aware that in the distant past Mr. Ury worked on several projects such as proposition 226 to curb unions taking funds for political purposes.  However, while I applaud Mr. Ury’s good work of about fifteen years ago, it is his recent votes that are troubling and do not show good leadership or stewardship for our County.

Neither Mr. Ury nor Ms. Bartlett came to the CRA’s endorsing convention to ask for the endorsement or explain their current and past voting records.  Robert Ming was endorsed unanimously by the CRA (CRA Wrap Up).

The final candidate for this position is a Deputy District Attorney Joe Williams (he is registered No Party Preference).  Mr. Williams is a complete unknown in that he has never held public office so there is no voting track record to give an indication of how he might vote on the dais of the Board of Supervisors.  He is not running any type of campaign to communicate to voters like myself what he stands for and his priorities if he were to be elected.   The only thing I have seen of his campaign are a few yard signs sitting on the side of busy roadways.  The Board of Supervisors, with its very large budget, its budget shortfalls, thousands of employees, with serious problems such as unfunded employee pensions and retiree health care costs, is no place for someone wanting to do “on the job training.”

For these and many more reasons (but keeping in mind this blog post is already very long) I support and hope you will also support Robert Ming for the Orange County Board of Supervisors, 5th District.

In the interest of full disclosure I am the majority shareholder of a private company known as IC Media, Inc. and Robert is a minority shareholder in the company.  Also, I am a practicing  attorney, a former elected member of the OC Republican Central Committee, a former officer with the California Republican Assembly and a volunteer activist.  I am not on the payroll of any candidate or campaign and I do not act as a paid consultant to any political campaigns.

 

 

Posted in 5th Supervisorial District, Dana Point, Laguna Niguel, Mission Viejo, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

 
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